Coroner releases ID of victim who died in Lexington Co. house fire

Published: Mar. 14, 2019 at 6:03 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON COUNTY, SC (WIS) - The Lexington County Coroner has unveiled the identity of the person who died following a house fire early Thursday morning.

According to Coroner Margaret Fisher, 69-year-old Joel Ferris was pronounced dead at the scene of the fire.

Officials said crews responded to a house on the 1400 block of Waterwood Dr. around 3:16 a.m.

Neighbors tell WIS it was a married couple in their 60s who lived in the house.

Irmo Police arrived on scene first and confirmed one person was still trapped in the home. Irmo Fire units arrived on scene and reported smoke coming from the house and fire coming out of the rear of the home.

One person is dead and another person is injured after a house fire in Irmo Thursday morning.
One person is dead and another person is injured after a house fire in Irmo Thursday morning.

Our fire crews went in and found the gentleman, took him outside the back window which was the fastest and easiest way to get him out of the house, ”Brian Haley, Fire Marshall, Irmo Fire District said.

Once crews pulled Ferris out of the back window they efforted CPR and worked on extinguishing the fire. One person was transported by Lexington County EMS to Lexington Hospital and Ferris was pronounced dead on the scene.

Neighbors say it was Ferris’ wife who made it out alive. Investigators did not confirm the identity but did say the person who was hurt is expected to survive.

WIS spoke with a few neighbors today calling this something they’ve never seen before in their neighborhood.

“We’ve been here for 17 years and that’s the first fire we’ve seen or know of in our neighborhood,” Victoria Jakes, a neighbor said. “I did not know what happened until this morning when I saw WIS news spot on at on the Internet this morning that someone had passed away, so it’s very shocking. Shocking to know it was a neighbor.”

Kristian Perkins, who lives across the street from Ferris describes what woke him up from his sleep Thursday morning.

“I saw them all getting ready they were going inside, there was smoke coming out the front door and out the windows and stuff. It was kind of crazy I saw them bring the old woman out and they brought him up to the ambulance checking on her, and then I was pretty much watching the firefighters do their job.” Perkins said. “I’ve never even seen an event like this happen with my own eyes.”

Perkins calls this scary night a reality check.

“If it can happen across the street it can happen to anyone you know?” Perkins said.

Officials said the second victim who was hurt in the fire was taken to a local hospital after suffering non-life-threatening injuries.

The Fire Marshall says the fire started in the master bedroom and believes more than likely it was a lit cigarette that caused the fire.

He adds there were smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms inside the home.

The Irmo Fire Department is still investigating.

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