Man Dies Trying To Save Wife From House Fire

Friday, March 9th 2007, 4:38 pm
By: News On 6

Two people are dead following a fire in McIntosh County. It happened Thursday morning in a rural area just north of Rentiesville. The News On 6’s Emory Bryan reports Patricia Benedict died in the fire; and Doyle Benedict died of heart failure after trying to rescue his wife.

The burned out shell of the Benedict’s home is all that's left. Mrs. Benedict died in the house during the fire; Mr. Benedict made it outside, but collapsed and died after trying unsuccessfully to save his wife.

"They were good people, hardworking people and this thing just come on them," said family friend Bill Buckmaster.

Buckmaster says the fire could have been worse because the Benedicts autistic son lived with them, but he was at a neighbor’s house when the fire started outside so he wasn't hurt.

"It was just a family that took care of each other, Roy was kind of autistic and they just kind of took care of each other and it was unfortunate that this thing happened," Buckmaster said.

When firefighters arrived the home was engulfed in flames. They suspect the fire was started by a space heater, but an exact cause is still under investigation.

Buckmaster believes the poor health for his two friends figured into what happened.

"Mrs. Benedict had Alzheimer’s real bad and stayed in the house most all the time and her husband had a lot of heart problems, had several surgeries and it was just a family that took care of each other," he said.

Mr. Benedict was a rancher and the family had lived in the home for 25 years. A family friend says because of the fire the autistic son is staying with relatives in the Tulsa area.

Funeral services for the Benedict's will be on Monday.