Springer house fire victim identified

SPRINGER, Okla. (KXII) -- Robert Don Ellis Jr., 56, died in a house fire that happened on Butler Street early Saturday morning.

"Felt like sitting in a sauna that was turned up 10 times more than it was suppose to be," neighbor Buddy Lusk said.

Buddy Lusk said he and his roommate were watching a movie in their home around 1:30 a.m. Saturday when their neighbor's house caught fire.

"I heard a couple of big bangs and pops and looked out the door and there were about 10 foot flames coming out the North side of the house," Lusk said.

Lusk says that's when he and his roommate grabbed a water hose and tried to put out the flames.

"The house was already pretty much gone by that time so we didn't really know what to do other than try to keep all the other buildings standing the best we could until the fire department got here," Lusk said.

Carter County Sheriff Chris Bryant says by the time fire departments got to the scene, the house was already engulfed in flames.

"After the fire was kind of detained and everything put out (a) white male subject 56-years-old was found inside," Sheriff Bryant said.

The family said the victim was 56-year-old Robert Don Ellis Jr.

They said he's lived at the home alone for about 15 years.

"He was real quiet, stayed to himself, never bothered anyone else," Lusk said, "He was kind of a good neighbor, if you ask me."

Lusk says he noticed Ellis' car in the driveway but did not know if he made it out of the house.

"His truck was there. I know he was more than likely there but I didn't know if he had got out and got to a neighbors. It's a bad deal in this little community," Lusk said.

Sheriff Bryant says the Fire Marshal is investigating how the fire started.

"Our thoughts and prayers from the Sheriff's office goes out to the family," Sheriff Bryant said, "I know once this story gets out, it will be a lot of prayers through out the community."

"My heart goes out for them," Lusk said, "It's just unbelievable that it happened like that."

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