Fire destroys Edinburg home

Shenandoah County Fire Marshal Dave Ferguson walks past a home at 105 Millertown Road west of Edinburg on Monday that was destroyed by fire on Sunday night. Rich Cooley/Daily
Anthony Helsley, 21, of Edinburg, looks through some charred cards that were in his late grandfather's home that was destroyed by fire on Sunday. Rich Cooley/Daily
These are some of the charred remains of the home at 105 Millertown Road west of Edinburg that was destroyed by fire on Sunday evening. Rich Cooley/Daily

A fire destroyed an unoccupied home at 105 Millertown Road in Edinburg on Sunday night.

Shannon Walters, a service assistant with the Shenandoah County Department of Fire and Rescue, said the fire was reported at 6:24 p.m.

“The house is a complete loss and no one was injured,” Walters said.

Firefighters and rescue crews from around the county reached the scene to find the front porch of the two-story house on fire, Walters said.

Fire Marshal David Ferguson said the cause of the fire remains under investigation. Ferguson said the house has been unoccupied since the recent death of its owner. No dollar value has been placed on the home, he said.

Firefighters and rescue crews responding to the scene came from Strasburg, Orkney Springs, Toms Brook, Shenandoah County, Woodstock, Mount Jackson, Edinburg and Conicville.

The owner of the house, identified as Leslie Helsley by his son-in-law Jeremiah Rittenour, died on Nov. 5 at age 77.

Rittenour said Helsley lived in the home for “close to 50 years.”

“It’s a real tragedy,” Rittenour said. “The wife passed away in July and him in November and then the house burned now, all three within a few months of each other.”

Rittenour, who lives across the road from the remnants of the house, said he believed the fire was “probably” caused by defective electrical wiring.

Rittenour said he and his wife were feeling ill and getting ready to go to bed when a passerby knocked on their door and told them of the fire across the street.

“The place was pretty well engulfed by then,” Rittenour said.

Ferguson asked anyone with information that could be helpful to the investigation to call him at 459-6167.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com

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