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Montesano man killed in fire

Fire claimed the life of a 55-year-old Montesano man Thursday morning, Montesano Fire Department Chief Corey Rux said.

At about 9 a.m. Thursday, Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of fire in a mobile home park on Poplar Road, finding the mobile home fully engulfed in flames, Rux said. They were able to bring the man out of the home, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Relatives identified the man as Aberdeen High School graduate Darrell Brooking. He’s survived by sister Debbie Babgley.

“He loved his family, nephews and nieces,” Dave Babgley, Debbie’s brother-in-law, said.

Brooking lived in the Vancouver, Wash., area before moving to Montesano at least 15 years ago, Babgley said. He kept to himself much of the time, but was an avid newspaper reader, subscribing to several papers. “He loved his newspapers, information,” Babgley said, especially letters to the editor.

There’s no determination yet on where the fire started or what caused it, Rux said. As Babgley and other relations combed through the ashes Thursday, they only saw extensive damage throughout the mobile home. Rux estimated the cost of the damage to be $12,000 to $15,000.

“It’s just a shell,” Babgley said.

Firefighters from Montesano Fire and Grays Harbor Fire District 2 were able to contain the fire to the mobile home. No other injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is still under investigation by the Montesano Police Department and Fire Department.

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