Mansfield man dies in blaze

MANSFIELD – A Mansfield man was killed in a fire that destroyed his mobile home around midnight Friday.

Terry A. Thomas, 63, of 237 Canoe Camp Creek Road, Lot 2, died in the fire that was dispatched at 12:09 a.m. Saturday morning, when a passerby on South Main Street called it in, according to Mansfield Hose Co. Fire Chief Jim Welch.

Welch said the single-wide mobile home was near the Wal-Mart in Richmond Township, and a hydrant nearby made water easily accessible, but there already were heavy flames when firefighters arrived on scene.

Thomas was the only person in the house, and firefighters “did not see any animals.”

Though not considered suspicious, Welch said a state police fire marshal from Montoursville was on scene investigating what may have caused the blaze.

Welch said when he arrived there was “heavy fire in middle area of trailer, and fire was through the roof.”

Firefighters initially didn’t know anyone was inside the trailer because there was no vehicle, “but it was in back of the trailer, and couldn’t see it when we first got there and there was no one around,” he added.

By then it was too late to begin rescue attempts, Welch said.

“We started a front and rear attack but the roof was falling in as well as the floor also was failing, so it was difficult for firefighters to make entry,” he said.

Welch said it took about two hours extinguish the blaze.

No other injuries were reported.

About 25 firefighters with tankers from Blossburg and Wellsboro fire departments responded, he said.