ANACORTES — The body found in a house destroyed by fire Thursday has been identified as that of the Rev. Dwight Woodruff of New Hope Christian Fellowship.
The fire at 2205 13th St. was so intense when firefighters arrived in the early hours of the morning that they couldn’t enter the house, Fire Chief Dave Oliveri said Thursday, and Woodruff’s body was found a few hours later during the investigation into the fire’s cause.
“There were no functioning smoke detectors in the house,” Oliveri said, indicating they didn’t contain the batteries needed in order to work.
“We think he woke up during the fire and tried to exit the front of the house, but the fire had grown so large before he tried to get out,” Oliveri said.
Woodruff, 68, likely died from smoke inhalation and heat, but the official determination will be made by the Skagit County Coroner, Oliveri said. Woodruff’s body was found 6 feet from the front door.
Woodruff was alone in the house, which he rented, the chief said.
Fire Marshal Jack Kennedy located the fire’s point of origin — the southwest back corner of the living room — but Oliveri said determining the fire’s cause was unlikely because of the extent of the damage.