UPDATE: Names Released in Fatal Alma House Fire


Authorities have released the names of two people involved in Saturday's fatal house fire in Alma.

Lois Clifton, 85, was killed in the blaze that was reported shortly before 8 a.m. Saturday.

The house on Cherry Street was consumed by flames when firefighters arrived.

A Harlan County deputy and a bystander were able to pull 57–year–old Kurt Peterson out of the house through a window, but were unable to get to Clifton, who was still trapped inside.

"We lost an elderly female -- a young man's lost his mother," Harlan County Sheriff/Assistant Fire Chief Chris Becker said. "The community will rally around in support. Red cross has been brought in to help with the man, all he had on was basically his pants and a shirt."

"It does appear to be an accidental fire," investigator Ryan Sylvester said. "Preliminary indications are it will end up being a smoking-related is preliminary so it is subject to change pending further investigation."

The deputy and Peterson were both treated and released from Harlan County Hospital.

An autopsy will be performed on Clifton in Gibbon later this week.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by the Nebraska Fire Marshall's Office.