Coroner Identifies 1 of 2 People Who Died in Spate of Christmas-Season House Fires in Elgin

Coroner Identifies 1 of 2 People Who Died in Spate of Christmas-Season House Fires in Elgin

The Kane County Coroner’s Office has released the name of one of two people who died in a recent spate of holiday-season house fires in Elgin.

According to Facebook posts from the Elgin Fire Department, Elgin “experienced unprecedented fire activity spanning Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and the early morning hours of (Dec. 27), including five structure fires, two of which resulted in fatalities.

The Coroner’s Office today (Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2020) identified a man who died in a Dec. 24 apartment fire as Douglas Hagan, 56, who had died at around 7:15 a.m. Christmas Eve Day at Sherman Hospital.

An autopsy was conducted Sunday, Dec. 27, and the preliminary cause of death is pending carbon monoxide testing, Coroner’s Office officials said. Toxicology samples were collected and sent to a forensic lab for analysis.

The Kane County Coroner’s Office is cooperating with the Elgin Police and Fire Departments in their ongoing investigation of this incident.

The death is one of two resulting from the five Elgin structure fires. According to the Chicago Tribune, Clarence Wilson Jr., 73, died during a fire inside his Bradley Circle town house about 3 p.m. Christmas Day.

Elgin Fire Chief Robb Cagann

“The causes of each of these fires were different, and the fatalities were unintentional results of the fires,” Elgin Fire Chief Robb Cagann said via Facebook.

The fires and fatalities were especially hard on families during the holiday season, as well as on the first responders who have battled through a pandemic this year.

“As chief of the department, I want to express how proud I am of the firefighter/paramedics of the Elgin Fire Department,” Cagann said. “The professionalism they continued to exhibit over these past few days is a testament to their dedication and commitment to the community.”

Cagann also stressed the importance of having working smoke detectors on every level of their home.

“This is a message that is often heard but we still regularly encounter absent or inoperable detectors,” he said. “The occupants of the fire occurring on the morning of the 27th were alerted to the fire by a smoke detector which allowed them the ability to evacuate the home quickly.”

Elgin residents with questions about placement, installation, or use are asked to contact the Fire Department Administration at 847-931-6175 or the Shift Battalion Chief at 847-931-6183.

SOURCE: Kane County Coroner’s Office news release, Elgin Fire Department Facebook page

Facebook Postd From Elgin Fire Department

Our crews have been very busy this holiday week, including 4 working fires in residential structures within the past 2…

Posted by Elgin Fire Department, Elgin, Illinois on Saturday, December 26, 2020

The City of Elgin Fire Department experienced unprecedented fire activity spanning Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and the…

Posted by Elgin Fire Department, Elgin, Illinois on Monday, December 28, 2020