An elderly Niles woman died Tuesday afternoon after being trapped in her burning home at 19 Ohio Ave.
The fire broke out just after noon, and neighbors outside enjoying the weather noticed something was wrong and called 911.
"When I looked over, I noticed some smoke coming out of the chimney. Then when I looked at the vent on the side of the house, there was smoke coming out of it," said neighbor David Petrilla.
He said he and fellow neighbor Angela Vincent, who just came home for lunch, called 911
"I told them to make sure they know somebody could be in the house, hoping that would get them here quicker," Vincent said.
Fearing the worst that Sally Spelich, 70, was still inside, both sprang into action.
"And then I tried to get in there, but I couldn't get in the door cause of the smoke and heat," Petrilla said.
Firefighters arrived just a couple of minutes later to battle the flames and see if the elderly woman was inside.
"When we searched the residence, we found a lady lying in the kitchen. It appears she tried to put the fire out herself, the sink water was running. We found her on the floor in front of the sink overcome by smoke," said Niles Fire Department arson investigator Lt. Rodney Freel.
Firefighters worked to revive Spelich at the scene before she was taken to the hospital where she died from her injuries. Neighbors said Spelich will be missed.
"She is adorable. She is this adorable little older lady and she is as sweet as can be," Vincent said.
Firefighters pulled burned up couches and chairs out of the home, and believe the fire started in the living room.
Freel said the cause of the fire has not yet been determined, but it does not appear suspicious. He said samples have been sent to the state fire lab for analysis.
Fire officials said the home had no working smoke detectors.
It was the third fatal fire in four days in the area.
On Saturday night, Justin Kidd, 20, died in a house fire just before midnight on Pricetown Road in Goshen Township. He was found in the basement, and three other family members escaped unharmed. The cause of that fire also still remains under investigation, but firefighters said it may have been electrical.
Also late Saturday night, Richard Baglier, 65, died in a fire at his mobile home in the Four Seasons Mobile Home Park in Vienna Township. Fire officials believe Baglier may have been smoking in bed, but they are awaiting autopsy results to confirm that.
No evidence of smoke detectors were found in Baglier's trailer, officials said.
A fast moving weather system will bring light snow to the area early Tuesday.
UPDATE: A shooting suspect, and possibly two suspects, managed to get away from police after a shooting just before 10 p.m. Monday.
Farmers enrolled in Ohio's Current Agricultural Use Valuation program are facing a tax hike as part of a re-evaluation process of the rates used to calculate their property values.
Abundant Life Fellowship Church in New Waterford held its fifth annual foster appreciation dinner Monday night to thank all foster parents for all they do.
The U.S. government is no longer part owner of General Motors.
A Hanoverton woman was sentenced Monday in federal court to house arrest and probation for her role in a marijuana distribution ring.
A Pennsylvania man remains at the Mahoning County Jail after New Middletown police said he threatened a woman with a stun gun during a domestic argument late Sunday night.
Youngstown Fire Chief John O'Neill wants to start a Junior Firefighter Program targeting young people between the ages of 12 and 18.
A street that was closed so crews could tear down an old theater in Youngstown has reopened.
State Sen. Joe Schiavoni, D-Boardman, is ringing in the holiday season by helping out the Salvation Army.
Four teachers in the Mahoning and Shenango Valleys are about to get $500 each to help in their classrooms.
Three new full-time officers were sworn in Monday evening during the Austintown Township trustees meeting.
Trial began Monday afternoon for the first of four alleged accomplices in a deadly home invasion in Niles.
There may be some traffic delays in Warren as crews begin to tear down a plant on the west side.
Police in Weathersfield said a pedestrian involved in an accident turned out to be the suspect in two burglaries in the area.
For the second time in six years, a mold problem has forced a Mercer County district court to relocate.