• 15-year-old girl dies following Gloucester fire


    GLOUCESTER, Mass. (MyFoxBoston.com) – A 15-year-old girl who was rescued after being trapped inside a burning home Tuesday night in Gloucester succumbed to her injuries Wednesday, fire officials said.

    Victoria McCabe Schmelzer died at Massachusetts General Hospital. She was on the second floor of a duplex at 36 Summer St. when the fire started and then spread quickly. McCabe could not get out and her parents could not reach her.

    Fire officials said the fire broke out in a top-floor bedroom and Schmelzer was trapped in the bedroom next to it, blocking the main exit.

    Schmelzer had special needs and suffered smoke inhalation while she waited to get out. She was listed in critical condition Wednesday morning and later died of her injuries.

    Schmelzer's mother and brother were on the first floor of the home. Her brother tried to rescue her, but suffered smoke inhalation. He was treated at the scene and taken to a local hospital. Everyone else who was in the duplex made it out safely.

    The firefighter who rescued Schmelzer used to live next door to the family.

    "This tragedy occurred despite the heroic efforts of the Gloucester firefighters who were able to rescue and revive her," State Fire Marshal Stephen D. Coan said.

    Coan and Gloucester Fire Chief Eric Smith said the fire was accidental and was caused by combustibles coming in contact with a lamp.

    Damages are estimated to be worth at least $100,000.

    Smith said it's important to have a working smoke alarm on every level of the home and a practiced home escape plan.

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