ASHE COUNTY-An early morning fire claimed the life of a Fleetwood woman Saturday.
Cathy Ellison, 52, of 668 Woodstown Road, was likely asleep when a fire broke out in or near her home’s kitchen on Nov. 14, according to Ashe County Fire Marshal Bob Davis. Davis said the fire may have started sometime around 7 a.m. and was reported to emergency responders around 8:40 a.m.
“Smoke is deadly in these situations,” Davis said. “It can overwhelm you fast, or if you’re asleep you just never realize.”
Ellison was transported to Ashe Memorial Hospital where she was pronounced dead.
Davis said Ellison’s family, including her husband Michael Ellison and two young daughters, were not home at the time of the fire.
Davis said the home is likely a total loss, though he said that determination will be made by insurance officials.
“These are rock solid people,” Davis said. “And this is just an absolute tragedy.”
Ellison’s friends and family posted on her Facebook wall in the hours following the fire.
“What a restless night. So very sad and in total disbelief of this news,” Ellison’s friend Gail Plumery wrote. “Last time we spoke we were talking about meeting for a camping outing and I sure wish I had done that.”
Funeral arrangements were not available at press time. The Jefferson Post will update with further details as they become available.