Crawfordville, Florida -- A 58-year-old Crawfordville woman died Thursday, Oct. 21 after being pulled from a house fire reported at 7:43 a.m. at 157 Finner Road in northeast Wakulla County, according to Sheriff David Harvey.
Sherrol Lee Wilson died at 9:21 a.m. after being transported by medical helicopter to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital. The State Fire Marshal was called to the scene to investigate, but there is nothing to indicate foul play.
Investigators said her son, David Eric Wilson, 34, was sleeping on the couch when he awoke to his mother shouting from the bedroom. He navigated smoke throughout the home and found his mother’s clothing on fire along with part of the bed and dresser.
He was eventually able to extinguish the clothing fire by using a fire extinguisher and garden hose. A Department of Corrections employee passing the home stopped and rendered assistance as the two men took Sherrol Wilson out of the house. She had third degree burns to her upper torso.
The fire was extinguished by 8:08 a.m. and the origin of the fire appears to be around the pillow and dresser area. Early indications show Ms. Wilson may have been smoking in bed.
The State Fire Marshal was called to the scene to investigate. The medical examiner will conduct an autopsy to determine cause of death which is believed to be complications from the fire as the victim had other medical issues.
While there is water, heat and smoke damage at the home, most of the structure was salvaged. Investigating the fire for the sheriff’s office were Det. Melissa Harris, Lt. Bruce Ashley, Det. Derek Lawhon and CSI Allison Blackstock.
The Wakulla County Fire Department responded to the blaze along with the St. Marks and Wakulla Station volunteer fire departments.
____________Report by Amy Long ___________
David Wilson moved home to care for his mother who had some medical issues.. And Thursday morning was no different.
"I was shocked. I was shocked. Dave came over and said I tried. I tried my best to get her out, but I just couldn't." says Jerome Evans the Wilson's neighbor.
Besides the charred mattress in the driveway- the home off Finner Road in Crawfordville looks perfectly fine on the outside. It's what happened on the inside that claimed the life of Sherrol Wilson and will forever change the life of her son David.
Thursday morning, David awoke to his mother screaming "hot! hot!" he says he jumped off the living room couch and noticed the home already filled with smoke - .He opened his mom's bedroom door and saw her and her clothing engulfed in flames. David called for help and was able to move his mom away from the fire, using a garden hose to extinguish the flames.
Later on, he found comfort in those nearby. "I was hurt. Dave came over and told me about it and we both just cried." Evans says.
Investigators say the fire stared around Wilson's pillow and dresser area leading them to believe she was smoking in bed. Bruce Ashley with the Wakulla County Sheriff's Office says, "We would hope that people do not choose to do that because it's dangerous and a lot of items associated with the bedroom are very flammable."
Evans says,"We all loved her around here. We're going to miss her because we always see her all the time. Everyday she passed by she was always waving up her hand and smiling and keep on going.."
Thursday evening neighbors stopped by to share their condolences. The American Red Cross will be assisting Wilson. He says his main concern is losing his mom's home now that she's gone.
Meantime - The state fire marshal is still investigating and an autopsy will be conducted.