One person dead in Mount Vernon fire

A 2-alarm blaze in an abandoned Mount Vernon home claimed a life late Saturday night, Fire Chief Al Everett said. 

There was no information about the victim‘s identity, as of early Sunday morning. 

“He was in there probably trying to make some heat,” said Mayor Rich Thomas, who was at the scene. “That‘s the danger of these (zombie homes).” 

The fire started in the 2.5-story building on Union Avenue between 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. Saturday night and continued to roar overnight. Flames shot through the roof at 12:30 a.m., and smoke filled the residential neighborhood. Firefighters chased pesky hot spots for most of the night. 

Firefighters had to wrestle with the blaze and the conditions. Temperatures barely crept above 20 degrees, and consistent winds threatened to blow the flames to nearby homes, Everett said. 

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