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25 Dead, 3 Injured in Boarding House Blaze


FARMINGTON. Mo.--A fire killed 25 residents of the Straughan Wayside Inn early yesterday morning, when the roof of the boarding house collapsed on their beds.

"It was an inferno is what it was. Unbelievable. The structure of the building was granite, but it burned like paper," Bob Oder, fire chief, said yesterday.

Oder said the fire broke out at the rear of the home, near the kitchen or television room. It failed to trigger a smoke detector and a fire alarm.

The Farmington State Hospital used the inn to board 13 of its patients.

Survey teams had inspected the inn in December. David Freeman, director of the state Department of Social Services, said yesterday. "They found nothing to cause concern. The place was clean and well-kept. "It was better than most," he added.

The blaze came only hours after another boarding house fire, which killed nine persons in Connellsville. Pa.

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