Fire chief: Cause of fatal Oriskany fire likely to never be known


The cause of the house fire that killed four members of the Davis family last month will likely never be determined, according to city fire officials.

“It’s too much damage to really make a cause or determination,” explained Fire Chief Thomas Iacovissi this week. He said the Dec. 15 fire has been marked “undetermined” in the department records.

A neighbor called 9-1-1 shortly before 9 p.m. Dec. 15 for the fire at 7736 Route 69, in the city’s outer district.

Firefighters arrived on the scene and managed to pull two people outside, but they were already deceased, officials said.

Within minutes of firefighters arriving, the roof of the home began to collapse, officials said.

Two other family members were found in the building after the fire was under control.

By the time the fire was out, the house had “completely collapsed into the basement,” Iacovissi said at the time.

That amount of damage makes determining a cause very difficult, according to the fire officials.

In the end, four members of the Davis family were declared dead: Richard C. Davis, his wife, Johanna, and their adult children, Richard “Rick” Davis and Tina M. Davis.


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