New Hartford fire claims life of elderly woman

Published Dec 4, 2017 at 4:00pm

NEW HARTFORD — A 98-year-old woman was killed in a house fire on Pearl Street Saturday morning.

During an interior attack at 48 Pearl St., Rye A. King was found deceased near a rear doorway, Fire Chief Thomas Bolanowski said.

Firefighters responded to the 8:28 a.m. county 9-1-1 alarm after a caller reported seeing smoke and flames coming from the residence.

Within minutes Bolanowski said fire personnel and police responded and firefighters immediately began an interior attack as they searched for residents inside the home. That was when King was discovered.

Willowvale and Clayville volunteer fire departments responded with mutual aid, as did personnel from Edwards Ambulance.

Flames were deemed under control by 10:04 a.m., the chief said. A crew from National Grid responded to turn off power and natural gas utilities to the residence.

An autopsy has been scheduled by the Onondaga County Medical Examiner’s office to determine the cause of death for the victim. King was the lone occupant of the residence, Bolanowski said.       

Several Cause & Origin investigators from New Hartford Fire Department, New Hartford Police Department and the state Office of Fire Prevention and Control are continuing their investigation into the cause of the fire.

The blaze does not appear to be suspicious, Bolanowski said.