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Last updated: Thu. Jan. 24, 2013 - 03:44 pm EDT

Body found in charred house ruins

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The charred remains of a person were discovered in the rubble of a house fire Wednesday morning near Warsaw, Kosciusko County officials said.

Sheriff’s deputies and five fire departments were sent to the blaze reported about 10:30 a.m. at 2147 Chapman Lake Drive.

When they arrived, the house was engulfed in flames, and the fire’s intensity kept firefighters from entering the home, said Sgt. Chad Hill, a spokesman for the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department.

Two renters living in part of the house had safely escaped the fire and gone to a neighbor’s home to call 911. The owner of the house that burned was believed to be inside, but Hill could not say whether that person died in the fire. The remains will be taken to the Northeast Indiana Forensic Center at St. Joseph Hospital in Fort Wayne to be identified, he said.

Hill said the cause of the fire is under investigation, but foul play is not suspected.

He said the fire destroyed the house and caused it to collapse into the basement. The flames spread to a neighboring house to the north at 2141 Chapman Lake Drive.

The residents of that home escaped without injury, he said.

Cold temperatures and wind blowing across Chapman Lake hindered efforts to extinguish the blaze, and firefighters worked in shifts because of the weather. The Warsaw chapter of the American Red Cross came to the scene to help the two renters displaced by the fire.

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