Body Found in Burned Home
OCALA- Ocala firefighters and the State fire Marshal's Office are investigating a late night house fire in Ocala that resulted with them finding a body inside.
Officials have not released the name of the victim, but neighbors said the woman is believed to be the homeowner Robin Seymour. She lived in the home on the 1300 block of southeast 14th street in Ocala with her Chihuahua named Paco. Paco actually survived the fire thanks to a Good Samaritan who saved the dog.
"I ran across the road and checked three doors just before I could find one that was open,” said Russell Kirk who lives across the street.
Seconds after seeing a flash of light outside his home, Kirk rushed into his neighbor's home that was on fire.
"It was pitch black in there and a lot of smoke and I could just hear Paco whimpering. So I crawled around and found him,” Kirk said.
After rescuing Paco, Kirk went back inside to try and find his neighbor.
"I was banging on the doors and at each door I would holler and tried to listen, but didn't hear anything," Kirk said.
Other neighbors tried kicking in the door, but couldn't make their way in the home because it was engulfed in flames. Ocala firefighters arrived within minutes.
"On arrival there were flames through the roof. They made entry. There was heavy smoke. Part of the roof had collapsed," said Ocala Fire Rescue Asst. Fire Chief Brian Stoothoff.
Firefighters battled the blaze. They searched the home and found a body inside.
"That pretty much confirmed what everybody was afraid of. Because everybody they knew that if her car was there she was probably there," Kirk said.
Neighbors said the victim is Robin Seymour. Seymour’s ex-husband, John Priester, said Seymour turned 65 years old on September 2, 2013. He describes her as personable and a very active social light in the community. He said she was a member of the Daughters of American Revolution and was a retired professor who worked many years at the College of Central Florida. She left behind a son and a daughter. While the family is coping with the loss, so are neighbors.
"It’s just a shame to lose anybody like that especially somebody who is literally right across the road from and that everybody in the neighborhood knew and cared about," Kirk said.
According to Kirk, the victim’s dog, Paco, is currently staying with a neighbor.
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