Newbury house fire claims life of local resident

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NEWBURY – A fatal fire occurred early this morning at a single-family home on Bowen Road in Newbury.

Police say 77-year-old James E. Lacount tragically lost his life in the blaze after re-entering the burning building to retrieve car keys.

At approximately 2:15 a.m., the Newbury and Corinth Fire Departments were dispatched to respond to a structure fire at the residence.

On arrival, they found the structure fully engulfed in flames.

Initial reports indicated that all occupants had initially escaped safely.

However, Lacount ventured back inside in an attempt to retrieve car keys to move a vehicle away from the fire.

He did not return before the structure’s subsequent collapse.

Corinth Fire Chief Edward Pospisic, upon assessing the scene and learning of Lacount’s unaccounted status, reached out to the Department of Public Safety Fire and Explosion Investigation Unit for assistance in locating any victims within the fire scene and determining the fire’s origin and cause.

Members of the Department of Public Safety Fire and Explosion Investigation Unit responded to the scene, conducting a search that led to the discovery of Lacount’s remains in a first-floor bedroom area.

The victim’s remains have been sent to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Burlington for an autopsy to confirm the identity and determine the cause and manner of death.

The fire’s origin and cause remain uncertain due to the extensive damage.

However, investigators currently believe that the fire was not the result of criminal activity.

In the aftermath of the tragic incident, the American Red Cross and State Police Victim services are providing assistance to the affected family.

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