MASON CITY, Iowa – The Mason City Fire Department is confirming a second person has died in a house fire that happened last Wednesday, August 27th. They tell us that 59-year-old Cherie McClemons, died from her injuries last Thursday. She had been taken to the University of Iowa hospitals after the fire, where she later passed away. 62-year-old Jesse Pierce was also killed in that fire.
MASON CITY, Iowa – An investigation by the fire marshal into a house fire that began in a Mason City home Wednesday night has determined the likely cause of the fatal blaze.
According to a statement by Mark Christiansen, authorities were called to the home at 1516 South Coolidge Avenue at 11:22 p.m. after a neighbor reported a fire in the home. When officers arrived on the scene, they forced open a door and found the home’s owner, 62-year-old Jesse Pierce lying on the floor. He was taken to Mercy Medical Center – North Iowa where he died.
Firefighters then found another resident, 59-year-old Cherie McClemons unconscious on a bedroom floor. She was taken to Mercy and then transferred to the University of Iowa Hospitals in Iowa City.
After an investigation, it’s been determined that the fire started when an ashtray holding a cigarette overturned and fell between the seat cushion and arm of a recliner. It smoldered there unnoticed until finally sparking.