State News

UNC-W grad killed in apartment fire

Posted January 2, 2010 11:56 a.m. EST
Updated January 4, 2010 10:24 a.m. EST

— A woman died and four other people were injured in an early morning fire at a Wilmington apartment complex Saturday.

Investigators said the fire began around 3 a.m. at the Cypress Pointe Apartment Homes, 5387 New Center Drive, near the University of North Carolina-Wilmington.

The fire damaged all 16 units in the building, completely destroying eight apartments. It took firefighters 30 minutes to get the blaze under control. More than a dozen people spilled into the parking lot, most in pajamas in the freezing cold.

Rory Michaelson, 23, was killed in the fire, investigators said. She graduated in December with a degree in special education from UNC-W.

Fire officials said her boyfriend, Corey Benoit, was transported to the Jaycee Burn Center at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill. He was listed in critical condition Sunday.

The three others were treated and released at a local hospital.

Fire officials say they are trying to determine the cause of the blaze, but don't think it was intentionally set.