By LORRAINE SWANSON | Patch Editor
Investigators remained on the scene of a house fire in the 9800 block of South 51st Avenue in Oak Lawn, where a third female victim has been.
The bodies of two male adults were taken from the scene earlier and brought to the Cook County Medical Examiner. All three victims are expected to be autopsied tomorrow.
The South Suburban Major Crimes Task Force is assisting Oak Lawn police in what is being termed a death investigation.
Illinois State Fire Marshal investigators were also on the scene.
An Oak Lawn firefighter came upon the fire on his way to work and called it around 5:16 a.m.
Single-digit temperatures and a frozen fire hydrant hampered firefighters’ efforts in knocking down the blaze that raged for three hours before being extinguished.
Firefighters found the first victim in the hallway and dragged him outside. Moments later, a second victim was found in the garage, Oak Lawn Fire Chief George Sheets told Patch.
The body of a woman was found underneath debris where a crane was steadily digging Wednesday afternoon.
Oak Lawn Police Division Chief Michael Kaufmann also confirmed the location of the two male victims’ bodies in the home.
Kaufmann said that four feet of water needed to be pumped from the basement and debris removed for the investigation to continue.
“It’s going to be a little bit of time to get this moving,” Kaufmann said. “[Investigators] are looking for evidence or any other people who may have been in the house and are under debris.”
Kaufmann would not comment if foul play was suspected, or if the deceased had been shot before the fire.
“We’ll leave the determination of the cause of death to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office,” Kaufmann said. “At this point we haven’t confirmed who they are.”
A neighbor told Patch that a married couple in their 60s lived in the home for about 20 years. The couple had an adult son and daughter. The son may have been living with his parents in the home.
He called them a “credit to the neighborhood.”
“They had a beautiful home,” Barney Nolan said. “The man was retired and was always outside working on the yard.”Check back for more updates.
Original story -- Two people have been found dead after a house fire destroyed a home this morning, WGN reports.
The fire started at around 5 a.m. in the 9800 block of 51st Avenue. The blaze took nearly three hours to extinguish, as firefighters struggled with the weather and a frozen hydrant. The victims have not been identified at this time.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
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