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Nokomis man dies in house fire

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Posted: Wednesday, January 2, 2013 5:00 pm | Updated: 9:20 pm, Wed Jan 30, 2013.

NOKOMIS, Fla. - A preliminary investigation indicates faulty wiring connected to a space heater caused Tuesday's fatal fire in an East Nokomis mobile home, killing the man who lived there.

It happened around 6pm Tuesday along Kenwood Avenue, Just north of Edmondson Road.

All that is left now is a burned down mobile home. By the time first responders got there Tuesday evening, it was too late. When the smoke cleared, Larry Frank James, better known as "L.F." was found inside.

Theresa Harris says she was close friends with him for more than 25 years. "I have been up since 3:30 this morning. I have been crying, and then I am fine, then crying again. It's a state of numbness."

She says James worked at the local Salvation Army thrift store and frequented the local Fraternal Order of Eagles, a past president there. "Very caring and straight forward; it didn't matter who you were, if he liked you then he liked you for who you were."

How this all came to be has Theresa and neighbors asking questions.

Marc Vance lives right next door, and the side of his home was melted by the heat. He says he was told that it was “electrical or possibly electrical”.

Other neighbors, like William Kidwell, say they heard it had something to do with a space heater and possibly extension cord. Some are now concerned about their own warming devices. "My girlfriend told me we are going to keep it unplugged, but I say these trailers get cold in the winter."

The Fire Marshal has conducted a preliminary investigation indicating the cause of the fire to be faulty wiring connected to a propane space heater.

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