Local News

Deadly Southern Pines Fire Claims Third Victim

Posted February 3, 2004

— A 12-year-old girl has died following a Monday morning house fire that took the lives of her her mother and brother.

Crews responded to the fire at the home on South Glover Street at 2:43 a.m.

Southern Pines Fire Chief Ricky Baker said Latrice McNeill died at the scene of smoke inhalation. Her son, Eric, was taken to FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital, where he died.

The 12-year-old daughter, Randa, died Monday night. She was being treated at Duke University Medical Center.

Herbert McNeill escaped the single-family, one-story home fire through a window without injury.

Baker said the fire originated in the chimney, where a wood stove was being used. He said there were no working fire detectors in the home.

"It's going to be a lost for everybody," said Lenolia Holmes, Latrice's mother. "I prayed and said, 'Lord, I know you are strong and I want you to make me strong.'"

Baker said it appeared the mother was trying to rescue the children after smelling smoke; all three were found in one bedroom.

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