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'They were pounding on his chest': Sarnia, Ont. apartment fire claims one life

One person is dead following a fire in a downtown Sarnia, Ont. apartment building on Tuesday evening.

The following morning, Maryanne Caron heard the news she’d been fearing.

A fellow tenant of this Sarnia apartment building had perished in a Tuesday evening fire.

“Wow, oh dear. We weren’t sure he was going to make it, but I didn’t know that he didn’t make it. Oh wow,” she said.

Sarnia fire officials confirmed a blaze broke out at 125 Euphemia St. at approximately 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, prompting firefighters to immediately rush to the third floor.

“They saw black smoke around one door, where they had to perform forcible entry,” said Mike Otis of Sarnia Fire Rescue Services.

Once inside, crews quickly located the victim and put out the blaze.

Another tenant, Gary Norton, watched fire crews arrive. He had fled to his balcony just above the entrance when alarms sounded.

From there, he witnessed life-saving efforts as the victim was taken outside.

“There’s a young fellow laying there,” he recalled. “They took his shirt off and they were pounding on his chest.”

It is not clear however if the man died at scene or at hospital.

The Office of the Ontario Fire Marshal is investigating.

One long-term resident said he is saddened that this is the most recent fire here over the past number of years — this is also the second fatal fire in Sarnia in just the past week.

The Office of the Ontario Fire Marshal’s continues to investigate a blaze on Napier Street that broke out on Saturday. It claimed the life of a man in his 60s.

Otis said the ongoing loss of life is hard for family and first responders.

The tragedy is also hard on tenants.

Norton said the “polite young man” killed in the Euphemia Street blaze had only moved in a few months ago.

“I kind of figured he had passed on. It is too bad. He seemed like a real nice young person. I am sorry to hear that,” he said. Top Stories

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