Grandson Tried To Rescue Grandfather

Deputies suspect arson

Patrick Gentry
July 14, 2019 - 7:22 pm

Authorities say a man and the grandson who was trying to rescue him have died in a house fire in northern South Carolina. Patrick Gentry has more.

Oconee County Emergency Services Fire Chief Charlie King said firefighters found the bodies inside the home in Walhalla after putting out the late Saturday night blaze.

Oconee County Coroner Karl Addis said the body of 75-year-old Winfred Dills was found in his bedroom and the body of his 25-year-old grandson Daniel Ayers was found near the back door.

Addis said in a statement family members told him Ayers went back inside the home to try and rescue his grandfather. Addis says autopsies will be done on both men Tuesday.

Oconee County deputies and the State Law Enforcement Division are investigating the cause of the fire.

UPDATE: 7/15/19.  The Oconee County Sherriff's Office has confirmed they are investigating this fire as arson.  The Sherriff's Office along with The Oconee County Fire Investigations Team, Coroner's Office, SLED and SC State Fire are working together.   

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