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Deadly fire was sparked by candles

Washington Post Editors

A fire that killed a woman and two children in their Lorton townhouse last month was started by candles that had been left burning, a Fairfax County fire spokesman said Tuesday.

Capt. Willie Bailey said that Elieen C. Langham-Anderson, 24, handed three of her children out of a second-story window to her brother who was waiting outside.

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But when she went back to rescue her other two children, she and the children — Soloman Anderson, 5, and Alfonso Anderson, 3 — were overcome by the smoke.

The 8:30 a.m. fire on Sept. 22 was ruled accidental.

Friends of the Andersons reported that they had no electricity in the townhouse on Hagel Circle and had been using candles for light.

Bailey said he did not know where the candles were placed or how long they had been burning before the fire erupted.

-- Tom Jackman

By Washington Post Editors  | October 6, 2010; 1:59 AM ET
Categories:  Fairfax, Fires & Fire Safety, Tom Jackman, Updates  
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