Girl, 15, dies in house fire

August 20, 1993|By Staff report

A 15-year-old girl died in a fire at her Edgewater home today, according to the county fire department.

The body of Robin Russell was recovered by firefighters after the blaze was extinguished. Four adults and two younger children escaped injury.

Robin was a student at the Central Special Education School in Edgewater.

The fire -- which was accidentally set -- caused at least $75,000 worth of damage to the Chipouras Drive residence, according to Capt. Gary Sheckells, a fire department spokesman.

Captain Sheckells said two men, two women -- including Robin's mother, Mary Russell -- and one child were asleep on the first floor around 2:40 a.m. when a barking dog woke up one of the women.

She lighted a cigarette lighter so she could see to retrieve the dog's bone from under a couch, and the flames from the lighter ignited nearby curtains, Captain Sheckells said.

One of the men went to the attic to get Robin and another child who were sleeping there. As he led them down the steps, Robin broke away and ran into the flaming first-floor room in search of her mother. The others were forced to leave the house.

Occupants of the house told fire officials there was an operating smoke detector on both floors.

Two firefighters were taken to Anne Arundel Medical Center for burns. Both were treated and released.

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