A Saturday morning fire has left two people dead and launched an investigation into a possible cause of the blaze in Clarksdale.
The Clarksdale Fire Department responded to a fire at a duplex on South Seventh Street at 5:05 a.m. and upon arrival were told there were people inside.
“A police officer said there were people in the fire and our guys crashed the doors and pulled two people out, but it was too late,” said Clarksdale Fire Chief Rocky Nabors. “Both died from asphixation from the smoke.
“I was real proud of our guys,” he added. “The minute they found out it was a rescue, they entered a burning building, got them out, turned them over to ambulance crews and then fought the fire.”
Nabors said Mary Bryant, 78, was found in a rear bedroom and her son James Bryant, 58, was found at the front door.
Nabors said the carport was fully involved when firefighters arrived.
Reports by neighbors and family members the fire may have been set are being checked out. No arrests had been made as of Tuesday afternoon.
Nabors said the fire is under investigation by both the Mississippi State Fire Marshal’s office and the Clarksdale Police Depart-ment. He said the State Fire Marshal investigates all fatal fire, the Fire Marshal is the lead investigative agency and his department and police are assisting.
“Let me assure you we are checking out everything we see and hear,” said Nabors. “At this point we don’t have a formal cause and hope that will be clear in a day or two.”