Thursday, October 12, 2000

Teen, toddler die in house fire

Baby's mother also badly hurt

By Janice Morse
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        HAMILTON — A 17-year-old newlywed and her beloved nephew — who would have turned 2 next month — died in a smoky fire that also seriously hurt the baby's mother Wednesday afternoon.

        Angela Couch and her nephew, Jason ""Bub” Glenn, were pronounced dead at Mercy Hospital Fairfield shortly after the blaze destroyed the converted garage where they lived.

[photo] Jeremy Davis (right) comforts Cecil “Kitty” Lingar, aunt of Angela Couch. Ms. Couch and her nephew Jason Glenn died in a fire Wednesday in Hamilton.
(Michael Snyder photo)
| ZOOM |
        Jennifer Glenn, 19, who is Ms. Couch's sister and the toddler's mother, was flown by medical helicopter to University Hospital. She was in critical condition Wednesday night.

        Just before 3 p.m., a neighbor went to a Dairy Mart and reported the fire, and that some people could be inside, officials said.

        As firefighters headed toward the home in the 1300 block of Pater Avenue, “We could see a large column of (black) smoke from probably a half-mile away,” said Pete Trauthwein, deputy fire chief.

        The blaze — during Fire Prevention Week — happened just two days after the young women and a favorite aunt, Cecil “Kitty” Lingar, sat in the home's living room and talked into the wee hours about their plans for the future.

        “Angela, she had just gotten married and said she didn't need to have kids right away because she had Bub to take care of,” said Ms. Lingar, 54, who lives down the street. “Jennifer, she was trying to make life better for herself and her son. She said, "I can't live at Mom and Dad's house forever.'”

        Ms. Glenn and her son had begun living with Ms. Couch and her new husband, Aaron, about two months ago, Ms. Lingar said. The structure is behind the home of the young women's parents, John and Theresa Lingar.

        “John and Theresa, they've lost so much: Their grandbaby's gone, their daughter's gone and their other daughter's really hurt bad,” Ms. Lingar said. “I can't figure out why they couldn't get out. ... I can't figure out what could have caused it.”

        The blaze is not thought to be suspicious, but Clifford MacBurney, fire investigator, said he expected to remain on the scene late into Wednesday night.

        A cause had not been determined, and no damage estimate was set.

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