On March 28, 2013 at approximately 12:35 p.m., the St. Louis Fire Department responded to a 911 phone call where the three-story home of 3401 Magnolia Avenue was set ablaze.
Captain Dan Sutter of the St. Louis Fire Department said that Shelia Richardson, age 54, who lives in the house with her daughter Jamie Richardson, age 22, evacuated the house just in time and got out safely. Unfortunately, the Richardson family’s two cats and dog died in the fire.
Upon investigation, firefighters believe the fire may have ignited in the basement and spread to the rest of the house causing extensive damage.
The family doesn’t have insurance but the house is owned by Shelia’s sister and brother-in-law, Debbie and Jim Tayoan.
Shelia Richardson said her daughter was doing laundry in the basement with a friend when Jamie yelled to call 911. The cause of the fire is unknown, however, Shelia believes that her daughter may have accidentally started the fire by smoking in the basement.
The husband and father of Shelia and Jamie Richardson died last October and were forced to sell the family’s truck to save money.
A few minutes before the fire on Magnolia Avenue, firefighters were called to a house fire in the 4000 block of Koeln Avenue, said Captain Dan Sutter. The house was unoccupied at the time and no one was injured.
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