ROCK HILL, SC (WBTV) – An elderly man was killed and a woman injured in a York County house fire Thursday morning.
The fire erupted just before noon at a home on Hoyle Street in Rock Hill. Neighbors said they heard an explosion just before the house went up in flames.
98-year-old Fred Cathcart died at the home. A second person, Alice Crockett, was airlifted to a burn center in Winston Salem, sources told WBTV.
Rock Hill firefighters have not determined what caused the fire, but say it is under investigation.
Witnesses described hearing a massive boom, as if a tree fell over, something hitting their house, or something blowing up.
Charlene Young, who lives across the street, said she called 911 after hearing the boom.
“I heard someone in there hollering for help by the time I came back the house was in flames. It was gone,” said Young. About Fred Cathcart, she said, “He was a good person and he's going to be missed.”
Many said Fred Cathcart was a good man who helped others in the neighborhood.
“He worked on lawnmowers. If anything needed to be fixed he'd tell you what was wrong with your cars and anything you needed. He'd give you the shirt off his back. He was a good man,” said Young.
She said Alice Crockett, who was hurt in the fire, took care of Cathcart. Crockett is at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center's burn unit in stable condition.
Rock Hill firefighters say that the home is a total loss. They said that by the time they arrived at the home, it was fully engulfed in flames.
Many of the homeowner's family members live nearby. They asked not to go on camera and said they didn't know what happened.
Neighbors say they are still trying to take in how someone died so suddenly.
“All of us are good people, don't nobody deserve to leave out like that,” said Young.
A spokesperson with the Rock Hill Fire Department said it could be days before they determine the cause.
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