Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Fri, October 25 2013 at 3:24 PM, Updated: Fri, October 25 2013 at 3:54 PM
The remains of two women have been recovered from a home near Bonanza that was destroyed by fire Thursday.
Josh Hunt watched helplessly as a home occupied by his mother and his aunt burned. Hunt is trying to pick up the pieces today...
"I'm doing a little bit better. Trying to be strong for my family...just making sure we all move on, but it is hard. Just take one step, baby step at a time."
The remains of 62 year old Patricia Ann Hunt and 67 year old Jeanne Florence Russell were recovered from the home.
Deputy State Fire Marshal Greg Davis says the fire was sparked by a deadly combination...
"Person was smoking, while in bed, while on oxygen. The fire traveled across the oxygen line to another room, blocking the escape route."
Davis adds that a cluttered home hampered initial rescue efforts...
"It looks like there was quite a bit of items stored in the home. The main entrance into the home was blocked with a couch, so they had only one entrance."
Fire investigators were on scene this morning, documenting the site of the fatal fire.
And Josh Hunt was remembering his loved ones...
"They were just loving and kindly. That's all they wanted out of life, was everybody just to love them, and care for them."
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.