Blaze turns home into rubble

A man living in the house escapes, but his young dog dies in the Monday morning fire.

Published March 6, 2007

FLORAL CITY - A man escaped injury from a fire that burned down his house Monday morning, but his dog was not so lucky.

David Cochrane, 60, said he emerged from his bedroom at 11:10 a.m. to find his wooden house full of smoke. He made it out safely. His 6-month old beagle, Wendy, died in the flames, fire officials said.

The fire consumed the aged two-bedroom wooden home at 10615 Boblink Lane, off Gobbler Drive. It also destroyed an adjacent wooden shed and a detached canvas carport and car.

The house was partially insured, fire officials said.

When firefighters arrived about 11:30 a.m., the house was fully engulfed, said fire official Patty Jefferson.

"At that point, the firefighters went into defensive mode," she said, "which means they tried to protect the surrounding buildings."

A neighbor's wooden home is just a few feet across the backyard fence from Cochrane's. It was not damaged.

The fire burned Cochrane's house down to its foundation. He declined to comment to a Times reporter.

Jefferson said Cochrane lived at the house with his wife, Kerry, but she was not home.

"He told us that he made coffee earlier, went back in his room, and when he came out a little past 11, smoke was already pouring out of the kitchen and into his bedroom," Jefferson said.

The fire was extinguished about 11:45 a.m.

Contact Jorge Sanchez at sanchez@sptimes.com or 860-7313 in Citrus or toll-free at 1-800-333-7505, ext. 7313.