ARUNDEL ON THE BAY, Md. (WMAR) - There's no wall left standing on the back of the home. Six hours after flames shot through the roof, fire investigators were still sifting through what was the victim's bedroom on Newport Ave. in the Arundel on the Bay Community.
"Just looking at it, it was terrifying, so I couldn't even imagine someone being in there," said McCall Johnson.
Johnson, 14, ran outside and took a picture showing the intense flames. It took firefighters about 40 minutes to bring it under control.
McCall’s mom, along with several neighbors, called 911. Ross Silverwood kept looking outside, wondering if his friend was home.
"I just felt like, if she's not out of that house by now she's not going to get out," said Silverwood.
Silverwood said the victim was trying to get her life back together after her husband died just six weeks ago.
She was the only one home when the fire was reported just before 10 a.m. Sunday. A fire spokesman has not identified the victim, but says she was in her 50's.
A dog that is trained to sniff for clues was brought on scene.
"It's routine on a call of this nature to bring in extra dogs and to confirm and to make sure we have everyone accounted for," said Lt. Cliff Kooser, Anne Arundel Co. Fire Dept.
But fire investigators are saying if the dog is sniffing for possible accelerants. The cause is still unknown and arson has not been ruled out.
The fatal fire captured the hearts and minds of neighbors all day. People who just got their power on after a week stood in the heat and watched firefighters go to work.
"It was just a really bad way to get everybody together but we were all together and it was a good way to be a community," said Johnson.
Speaking of the heat, 50 firefighters were on the scene mainly to take frequent breaks while another team went into the home. Investigators know there were smoke alarms in the home; they aren't certain yet if they were working.
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