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Neighbors: Elderly woman killed in house fire days after her husband’s death

Posted at 6:18 PM, Feb 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-18 18:18:36-05

PETERSBURG, Va. – An elderly woman was killed in a Petersburg house fire Tuesday morning, only days after her husband’s death, neighbors tell CBS 6.

Crews were called to the 500 block of Oak Hill Road for a house fire at approximately 7:31 a.m.

Minutes before firefighters arrive on scene, neighbor Avery Vinson came outside and saw flames.

"I saw some real large flames coming out the back of the house," said Vinson. "I grabbed a fire extinguisher, it was kind of a waste, but I tried pumping it up in the window."

When that didn't work, Vinson says he banged on the front and back door of the home.

Firefighter arrived at the home, minutes after the initial call.

"During their fire attack operations, they discovered a fire victim," said Chief Fire Marshal Jim Reid.

The victim’s name has not been released at this time, but neighbors confirm the victim is an elderly woman who recently buried her husband.

"We just went to her husband’s funeral on Saturday," said neighbor John Hennessee, who says the deadly fire in surreal.

"She was a God-fearing woman. She was a good Christian woman and she's with her husband, so she's probably where she wants to be," he added.

Neighbors says it’s a tragedy that’s hard to comprehend.

"Very sorry to see this happen," said Vinson. "Just sending prayers for everybody that was involved.”

The exact cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The medical examiner will determine the elderly woman's cause of death.