Early morning fire destroys Columbus, IN home

Updated: Nov. 25, 2017 at 8:56 AM EST
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Firefighters were called to the scene just after midnight Saturday. (Source: Columbus FD)
Firefighters were called to the scene just after midnight Saturday. (Source: Columbus FD)
(Source: Columbus FD)
(Source: Columbus FD)
(Source: Columbus FD)
(Source: Columbus FD)

COLUMBUS, IN (WAVE) - An Indiana father and son are safe after a fire destroyed their home early Saturday morning.

Columbus firefighters were called to a home in the 300 block of Smith Street around midnight, Saturday morning.

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Columbus fire officials said crews arrived to find "home was fully involved, with flames shooting well above the home's roof." According to a press release, Columbus officers heard explosions as they approached the home but found the home's residents, a father and son, safely outside.

Investigators said Garry Gatewood, 63, and his son Doug, m33, were in the home when the fire began in the living room; there were the only ones home at the time of the fire. Garry Gatewood allegedly told investigators that the fire started in this recliner and spread to a nasal cannula that supplies his home oxygen therapy.  According to Gatewood, the fire then spread to the carpet and curtains behind the recliner. Garry Gatewood told firefighters that he was a smoker, according to a press release, but denied he was smoking when the fire started.

Garry Gatewood told Columbus FD investigators that he tried to put out the fire by pouring a drink on it. When that didn't work, Garry called to his son for help.

Once the home began to fill with smoke, and the pair could no longer see each other, they escaped the home through a side door, investigators said.

Columbus Fire investigators said the fire caused significant damage to the home totaling around $100,000. The home is considered a total loss.

No one was injured in the fire. The Salvation Army is assisting the family.

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