House Fire Leaves Two Dead

Monday, November 24th 2008, 9:48 am
By: News On 6

By Latoya Silmon, The News On 6

NOWATA, OK -- A fire claims the lives of two Nowata men.  Now instead of planning Thanksgiving dinner, their families are planning their funerals.

The state fire marshal thinks the fire may have started in the kitchen from discarded embers.  Whatever the cause investigators say a working smoke detector could have prevented two deaths and stopped the grief that's gripping two families now.

It's a sight so ghastly that it stops many passersby in their tracks.

"There is nothing left.  The inside is just completely gone. It's sad.  It's really sad," said Shaunna McKee, friend of J.R. Peace.

Investigators say the fire ripped through John Breshear's home early Sunday morning.  Four people were inside, but J.R. Peace and John never made it out.

"Him and John been best friends since grade school.  They done everything together," said J.R.'s mother, Lisa Peace.

And, they're inseparable even in death.  Lisa Peace says her son, J.R., will be buried with his friend.  The families are making arrangements, but for this mom her loss still hasn't sunk in yet.

"Big shock.  Big shock.  You know, you don't expect anything like this. I mean mothers are not supposed to bury their kids," said J.R.'s mother, Lisa Peace.

At 29, she says J.R. had a lot to live for.  He was the father of two and former football standout was popular in Nowata.

"He was pretty popular. Both of them were pretty well known around town and it's a small town everybody knows everybody," said Shaunna McKee, friend of J.R. Peace.

And, when one hurts they all do.

J.R. Peace leaves behind two daughters.

John Breshear's family says the loss is too painful to talk about.

The house didn't have a working smoke detector.   The Oklahoma Fire Marshal's Office says it's working with Nowata firefighters to start installing them in homes for free.