NEWTON (CBS) – An elderly woman died in a three-alarm fire in her home early Monday morning.

WBZ NewsRadio1030’s Carl Stevens reports

Firefighters were called to the house on Cottonwood Road just after 3 a.m.

WBZ-TV’s Sera Congi reports

Dan Hart, a neighbor, had noticed the flames, called for help and then tried to get into the home, but was pushed back by the inferno.

“The flames must have been at least ten feet high before I even saw them,” he told WBZ NewsRadio 1030.

“The door was locked and I gave the door a push and it wouldn’t move.  So I backed up about a foot and I put my 275 pounds behind it with my shoulder and just broke it right in, I just popped right in.”

The 79-year-old woman, who lived alone and was bedridden, was trapped in a second-floor bedroom.

Firefighters were also unable to reach her.

“They made a valiant to get inside, but it was just too much fire. It pushed them back out of the house. Certainly they were not able to get very far into that back bedroom at all,” Newton Fire Chief Bruce Proia told WBZ-TV.

The woman’s name was not released.

Investigators say the fire started in her room, but there’s no word yet on a cause.

Comments (7)
  1. Willow says:

    How tragic that an elderly woman who was bedridden had no one to stay in the house to care for her. It’s very sad.

    1. clarkie95 says:

      To Willow,
      I am a relative of the woman who died in this fire. She was loved dearly by her family and friends. I for one would have dropped everything to take care of her. However, she was a very private person and refused to have anyone live with her or take care of her!!!!

      1. Willow says:

        Even more of a tragedy for those who loved her. I know that many elderly want to remain independent, and many times it isn’t a very wise decision. Thank you, clarkie95 for sharing that information, and I’m so very sorry for your loss.

      2. Italo says:

        Dear Clarkie, I am very sorry about this loss of yours and your family. I, for one, understand what you’re talking about. My elderly mother refuses to live out her remaining years anywhere but in her own home where she has lived for some 60 years, also. It can be easy, even unintentionally so, for other people not in such a situation to Monday-morning-quarterback about what should’ve or could’ve been done for such an independently living elderly woman. Eldercare services can provide a weekly homemaker visit, and access to services such as an in-home Wellness Alert device hooked up to the elder’s home…but beyond that, private-pay services cost lots of money, and aren’t available unless the elder spends down all their remaining assets. It is very sad what happened, but we also cannot force the elder to do something they don’t want to do, or have them declared a dependent or cognitively disabled unless/until it is proven that they are legally just that. This woman got to live out her life where she wanted, in her own home of many years–because she wasn’t just a statistical elder, she was a human being still in possession of, and having the rights to, her own personal wishes, preferences, and choices. She is in our thoughts here right now, too.

  2. Stephen Rost says:

    We’ll be waitin on the word’

    May God show rest to the soul of every Woman.

    1. Willow says:

      Amen, Stephen!

      1. A SAD FIRE FIGHTER says:


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