Waskom Fire Kills 17 Year Old Boy - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

02/13/04 - Longview

Waskom Fire Kills 17 Year Old Boy

A deadly fire broke out early this morning in far East Texas, claiming the life of a teenage boy. The blaze broke out before 7:00 a.m. at a home on Dogwood Trail, just south of Waskom near the Louisiana border.  Crews from four volunteer departments rushed to get it under control.

"Wood framed structure two-story , went up extremely fast," said Harrison County Fire Marshal Dennis Engdahl. Firefighters say 17-year-old Bobby Stephens was staying with friends at the home, and was asleep in a back bedroom. He was trapped when the home caught fire, and as the blaze was extinguished, the grim job of recovery began.

Making matters worse for family and friends, was the fact firefighters had to sift through the rubble to find Stephens body. His family said at 17, Stephens was the father of a 15 month old girl and had planned to marry the child's mother, and planned to return to school to finish his education.

Now his family and friends are left to just wonder what would have been. "They're tough they're tough, this... you do everything you can to help them, but its tough to deal with" said Engdahl.

Three others who were inside the house at the time of the fire were able to escape safely. "Try to figure out what happened, and hopefully we can keep it from happening again" Engdahl said.

Firefighters say the house didn't have a single smoke alarm. Stephens body has been sent for autopsy.

Bob Hallmark, reporting.

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