- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 19, 2016

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Alaska State Troopers say an autopsy showed that a 72-year-old priest who was recently found dead following a fire in the southwest Alaska village of Chefornak (che-FOHR’-nuk) died of natural causes before the blaze started.

Troopers say no foul play is suspected in the Oct. 12 death of Theodore Kessler. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Fairbanks has said Kessler was a long-serving priest and that the fire broke out in the church rectory.

According to troopers, the fire marshal’s office determined the fire was caused by burning candles.

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