By Associated Press - Friday, May 22, 2015

HURT, Va. (AP) - The Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office say a couple who lost their lives in an early morning fire had been married for 53 years.

WSET-TV ( reports out the fire broke out just before 1 a.m. Wednesday near Hurt. Eighty-nine-year-old Richard Hoggatt and his 72-year-old wife, Mary Hoggatt, died in the blaze along with their dogs.

Authorities say a high school student driving down the road saw the house engulfed in flames and called 911.

Hurt Volunteer Fire Department Chief Brian Dudley says he had to hold back the couple’s children from going inside. A special agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco Firearms and Explosives is looking into what caused the blaze. Witnesses and firefighters say the heat was intense and booms could be heard from the windows exploding.


Information from: WSET-TV,

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