Fund Set Up For Fatal Fire Victims' Son

Saturday, March 10th 2007, 8:05 pm
By: News On 6

MUSKOGEE, Okla. (AP) A memorial fund has been set up for the son of a couple who died after their home caught fire. Roy D. Benedict, a developmentally disabled man who lived with his mother and father, was taking a walk Thursday morning when firefighters were called to his parents' residence northwest of Rentiesville.

Benedict’s mother, Patricia Benedict, 72, died inside the burning home. His father, Doyle Benedict, 73, got out of the house but died later at Muskogee Regional Medical Center as a result of heart failure.

Cathy Daniels, Roy Benedict’s aunt, said her nephew was brain damaged at birth. Benedict’s friends said the fund was set up to help the 42-year-old replace clothing, medication and other essentials consumed by Thursday’s blaze.

Leona Dearmore of Peoples National Bank in Checotah said the fund was set up at the request of some residents of Checotah, where Benedict graduated from high school.

"We would like to see everyone pull together as a community and help Roy Benedict during this tragic turn of events in his life," Dearmore said.

Firefighters have said a space heater may have caused the blaze.

Donations to the Roy D. Benedict Fund should be directed to the Customer Service Department at Peoples National Bank in Checotah.