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Elderly Woman Dies in Fire at Leisure Village Duplex

Tragedy: Neighbor's daughter tries to put out flames with a garden hose. It is the fourth such death in six weeks.


CAMARILLO — An elderly woman died Monday night when flames consumed two rooms of her Leisure Village home, authorities said.

The woman's name and age were withheld pending notification of next of kin.

The woman died despite the efforts of the daughter of a nearby resident, who sprayed the flames with a garden hose through a blown-out living room window of the one-story duplex.

"The neighbor saw the woman in the house trying to crawl toward the front door," said Dave Festerling, a deputy chief with the Ventura County Fire Department. "She put [water from] a garden hose on her, but the fire was too intense."

The name of the woman who attempted to rescue the victim was also not given out by fire officials.

The blaze destroyed much of the living room and kitchen of the wood-framed stucco home on East Leisure Village Drive.

Fire Department investigators are continuing to investigate the cause of the blaze, which was unknown late Monday.

Four engines and 20 firefighters fought the blaze, which began about 6:10 p.m. Flames were shooting 8 to 10 feet in the air when firefighters arrived. The blaze was extinguished in about 30 minutes.

The adjoining duplex was undamaged, Festerling said.

This was the fourth fire fatality in the county in the past six weeks, he said.

On Oct. 14, Donald Armstrong, 58, and Debra Armstrong, 47, died of burns and smoke inhalation after a fire broke out in the living room of their Ventura Street ranch home in Fillmore.

Authorities said that fire was an accident sparked either by a burning candle or cigarette. The Armstrongs had a new plastic smoke detector in their Spanish-style home, but it was missing a battery.

And Jason Eugene Revard died Nov. 15 in Oak View when an early-morning blaze destroyed a camper where he was sleeping. A propane torch stored in the camper was the source of the fire that killed the 23-year-old plumber.

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