FAIRHAVEN (FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) – An 84-year-old woman and her cat were killed in a fire on Mill Road in Fairhaven on Thursday morning.
Emergency crews responded to the home at 304 Mill Road around 10:25 a.m. after receiving a call from the cleaning lady who was supposed to be cleaning the home.
Upon arrival, firefighters found the woman on the floor just inside the entrance, and a fire in the kitchen of the in-law apartment on the second floor.
The woman, identified as Barbara Wilbur, was taken to St. Luke's Hospital where she later died. It is believed Wilbur died of smoke inhalation.
Firefighters quickly knocked down the blaze; however, the apartment sustained a considerable amount of damage.
A preliminary investigation revealed that the fire started in the kitchen of the in-law apartment in the area of the cooking stove. Wilbur may have tried to extinguish the fire, and then tried to exit the home where she collapsed just short of the door.
The home is occupied by Cheryl Costa and the victim's son, Bruce Wilbur, who were not home at the time of the fire. Damage to the home is estimated at $40,000. There were working smoke detectors in the home.