A fire left two people dead at a duplex in Dennis, Massachusetts, on Sunday morning, officials said.
The Dennis Fire Department arrived on Nimblick Street at around 6:52 a.m. and found smoke coming from the two-story building, authorities said.
Two people and a dog were located and removed from the house. Both people were transported to Cape Cod Hospital, where they later died, according to the Dennis Fire Department. The dog also died in the fire.
The cause of the fire was under investigation Sunday.
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“It’s too early to say how the fire started, but we know there were no working smoke alarms in the unit where it began,” said Fire Chief Robert Brown. “Please check your smoke alarms today to be sure they’re working properly on every level of your home.”
The two people who died were identified Monday as Gina Champ, 63, and Edward Snell, 60. The Cape and Islands District Attorney's Office said they lived in the building.
"They were very close, very nice people," said Tammy Thompson, a friend of the deceased couple for five years. "She didn't deserve to die, they didn't deserve to die like that."
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"It's very sad because they were good neighbors," said Mike Oliva, a resident of the neighborhood. "Good wakeup call to put smoke detectors in on every floor."
When Crystal Seigel's smoke alarms went off Sunday morning, she thought it was probably just something harmless.
"Initially we thought someone was burning something," said Seigel. "Then when we realized it was real... I yelled and told my kids to run outside and check on the neighbors."
They tried knocking on their neighbors' door. But when they did, no one answered.
"The front door was locked. We ran to the backyard, [and] called 911. We were trying to call our neighbors yelling for their names. There was no response at that time," Seigel said.
Seigel said their neighbors were more like family than friends. She said the incident her family witnessed has traumatized them.
"My kids saw everything," said Seigel. "So that's something that's going to have to be worked through, because no one should have to see what we saw today."