Early morning fatal fire victims tentatively identified
No foul play is suspected in the fire-related deaths of a southern Whitley County husband and wife, who were found dead inside their home early Friday morning.
Whitley County Coroner Andy Croley said that authorities are still in the process of positively identifying the victims, but they have tentatively been identified as Rebecca Luntsford and her husband, Jimmy Luntsford Jr.
Both were pronounced dead by the Whitley County Coroner’s Office at 12:45 a.m. Friday inside their residence at 3503 Wolf Creek River Road, which was a singlewide trailer. Croley said that at this point, it is believed that the two deceased individuals were the home’s residents.
“There were family members that lived adjacent to the property, who said they would have been the only two individuals at the residence at that time,” Croley said.
Autopsies were performed Friday by the Kentucky Medical Examiner’s Office, and there were no signs of any type of foul play, Croley said.
He noted that the cause and manner of death are still yet to be officially determined, but are believed to be fire-related.
“There were no signs of foul play or any trauma that was caused other than from the fire,” Croley said.
Croley said that there were multiple calls to Whitley County 911 shortly before midnight from people on southbound I-75 near the four-mile marker, who reported seeing a fire.
Firefighters were then dispatched to the area, and found the burning trailer.
Emlyn Volunteer Fire Chief Thomas Manning said that fire damaged the trailer to the point where it is considered a total loss.
About 12:36 a.m. Friday, Kentucky State Police were notified by the Whitley County E-911 Center about the structure fire with two fatalities.
KSP Arson Investigator Brian Lewis and KSP detectives arrived on the scene and located the two deceased bodies after the fire department had extinguished the blaze, according to a KSP press release.
“The cause of the fire has not been determined at this time, however, foul play is not suspected,” according to a KSP release.
Lewis, detectives from KSP Post 11 in London, and Croley are continuing the investigation.
They were assisted by troopers from Post 11 in London, the Whitley County Sheriff’s Department, the Kentucky Fire Marshal’s Office, and Pleasant View, South Whitley and Emlyn volunteer fire departments.