Fire rekindles, destroys second home
SUNBURY – A fire that killed a Sunbury resident Tuesday night rekindled early Thursday morning, destroying an adjoining home that was saved by firefighters less than 36 hours before.
Kriss Berry’s home at 1003 Penn St. had no fire or smoke damage following Tuesday’s fire that claimed the life of Keith “Bo” Bordner, 53, of 1005 Penn St. The buildings are separated by just inches, but damage to Berry’s home was contained to siding and part of a porch roof thanks to the valiant efforts of firefighters.
The damage to Berry’s home was drastically different Thursday morning. Within an hour of the fire windows were broken, siding was completely melted and the main roof had collapsed.
The fire was reported at 1:38 a.m. at the structures near the intersection of South 10th Street about a block-and-a-half from Shikellamy High School. An officer arrived on scene and confirmed that both buildings were on fire.
A second alarm was almost immediately transmitted, which was eventually upgraded to a third alarm, sending firefighters from surrounding communities, including Shamokin and Coal Township, to the scene.
Northumberland County Coroner James Kelley reported Wednesday that he pronounced Bordner dead at the scene in the living room in the front of the house. Kelley was assisted by Chief Deputy Coroner James Gotlob in the investigation.
The death, which was ruled accidental, was caused by thermal injuries, Kelley said.
Sunbury Fire Department Chief Mike Rhoads said Bordner's wife, Debra, attempted to get her husband, who may have been in a wheelchair due to rheumatoid arthritis, out of the house, but was overcome by smoke.
Members of the fire department and police department also attempted to rescue Bordner, but were turned back by intense flames, Rhoads said. After failed attempts to rescue Bordner by emergency personnel, the entire front of the building was engulfed in flames within minutes.
Rhoads said the fire originated in the living room where Bordner was found in an area with multiple power cords and power strips. At approximately 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, firefighters investigating the burned shell of a structure brought out what appeared to be a burned power cord, which Rhoads confirmed is suspected to have sparked the fire.