FLINT TOWNSHIP (WJRT) (06/14/18) - A Flint Township man was found dead inside his house that caught fire Thursday evening.
The Flint Township Fire Department responded to the 2400 block of Thornton Avenue around 10 p.m. after witnesses called 911 to report flames coming from the residence.
Neighbors noticed a vehicle in the driveway and raised concerns that the resident might still be inside. The house was engulfed in flames when the first fire units arrived.
Firefighters found the body of 63-year-old Eugene Gasparich inside.
Fire crews initially had a little difficulty getting inside to battle the flames and attempt a rescue due to a deadbolt on the door.
"We tried to make entrance, the front door was dead bolted," said Flint Township Fire Chief Thomas Stadler. "We did have difficulty getting in to the front door. Once we did get into the structure, we did unfortunately confirm a fatality."
Investigators say the delay likely didn't make a difference in saving Gasparich due to heavy smoke and flames inside when they arrived.
Flames on the back side of the house reaching overhead utility lines also caused some difficulty.
Investigators declared the fire accidental after determining it likely started on the stove. There was no word on whether the home had working smoke detectors.