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UPDATE: Contents of Beloit home contribute to fatal fire

2 residents escape blaze safely

UPDATE: Contents of Beloit home contribute to fatal fire

BELOIT, Wis. - Beloit firefighters pulled a man out of burning building early Tuesday morning, but the man later died from injuries suffered in the fire.

Firefighters received a call around 3 a.m. Tuesday about a fire at a home in the 1900 block of Grant Street in the city of Beloit. Firefighters said flames and smoke were pouring out of the house when they arrived -- especially from the basement.

When firefighters arrived, they found that two people were able to escape the home safely, but a third man was trapped in the basement. A fire official told News 3 that it appeared the victim was the homeowners' adult son.

Rock County Coroner Lou Smit identified the victim as 53-year-old Thomas A. Jenks.

Jenks had been in the lower part of the house when the fire started, officials said.

Next door neighbor Joanne Korn said the mother and father were able to get out of the home safely. The father went back inside, hoping to rescue his son, but couldn't reach him.

"The alarm woke her and her husband was in the living room area. He tried to go back in to get the son and he just couldn't," Korn said.

Fire investigators said materials inside of the home contributed to the fire.

"The biggest problem is the components of everything, the synthetic materials, the plastics, there is just a greater volume of it so it allows the fire to get bigger, quicker," Beloit Fire Investigator Jeremy Flanagan said.

Firefighters pulled Jenks from the house, however were unable to resuscitate him.


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