Saturday, Oct 01, 2016
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Police & Fire

Hillsdale Co. pair found dead after mobile home fire

HILLSDALE - The bodies of two people were found yesterday in a Hillsdale County mobile home after it was ravaged by fire, authorities said.

Frank M. Shaw, 45, who lived at the home at 5800 West Bacon Rd., and Mary J. Fouty, 61, of Jerome, Mich., were found dead inside the home, according to sheriff's deputies.

The Lucas County coroner's office is expected to perform autopsies today.

Allen Township firefighters were sent to the home about 12:20 a.m. and found the home ablaze.

A passer-by alerted emergency personnel.

A state police investigator said the fire apparently started in the kitchen area.

He said the fire spread quickly through the older mobile home, which was a total loss.

The investigator said after the autopsies are performed and further interviews with the first witness tomorrow are conducted, the cause of the blaze likely will be determined.

Family and friends of Mr. Shaw and Ms. Fouty told authorities the two worked together at Foamade Industries Inc. in Hillsdale. The plant makes gaskets, filters, and other foam products for vehicles.

Katie Bloss, plant manager for the Hillsdale operations, said Mr. Shaw and Ms. Fouty were hard-working, friendly people.

Mr. Shaw worked at the Industrial Drive plant for nearly a year; Ms. Fouty, known as MJ, was working at the plant through a temporary employment service and had been there for a little more than two months, she said.

"Frank had a one-liner ... for every occasion," Ms. Bloss said. "He was a very funny guy. Every morning, he could make you laugh."

She said Mr. Shaw and Ms. Fouty worked the 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. shift as general operators. She said the approximately 50 employees working at both the Industrial Drive and Development Drive plants are very close and that the news will come as a shock to everyone. "They will be missed by many," she said.

Mr. Shaw had just moved into the mobile home and lived there no more than three months, authorities were told.

The sheriff's department is continuing to investigate the fire with the help of state police.

The township's firefighters were assisted in extinguishing the blaze by the Jonesville, Hillsdale, and Hillsdale Rural fire departments.

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