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2 people, dog found dead after mobile home fire

Posted at 4:42 AM, Mar 02, 2016

A fire swept through a mobile home in Polk County overnight, claiming the lives of two people and a dog, authorities said.

The blaze broke out shortly after 1 a.m. Wednesday at the mobile home at 4343 Old Polk City Road in Lakeland, according to Polk Fire Rescue.

Wednesday afternoon the Polk County Sheriff's Office identified the victims as Denny Shane Bassford and his girlfriend, Susan Denise Hall.

The couple had been staying in the mobile home on property belonging to Gene Robson, Bassford's grandfather.

"He was a brilliant boy, he was really smart. Would have made a good preacher," he said.
 
Robson was asleep and said he never smelled the smoke and never saw the fire.
 
When firefighters arrived, about three quarters of the structure was on fire. Once the fire was extinguished, firefighters discovered the bodies of the man and woman and that of a dog.
 
Three other dogs were found outside the mobile home, including one with a broken leg.
 
"They think the thick smoke got my grandson and got his girlfriend," Robson said.
 
Fire investigators, including the state fire marshal, were called to the scene to investigate the cause of the fire. 
 
Investigators said it does not appear to be suspicious, but they are still waiting for the toxicology results.