Troy mourns death of young couple
TROY - Steady rain fell like a torrent of teardrops Tuesday as the Troy community mourned the death of a young couple who lost their lives in a house fire early Monday in the borough.
At the site of the deadly fire on Canton Street, two bouquets of memorial flowers had been placed, standing out among the blackened ruins and boarded up windows of the ruined home.
One, with orange and yellow flowers, was adorned with a large letter "B" and a "groom" label, and the other, with pink and white flowers, had a large letter "K" and a "bride" label.
Bradford County Coroner Tom Carman identified the victims Tuesday as Brandon and Katie Evans. A neighbor said the couple had been married for about a year. Carman said Brandon was 26 years old and Katie was 22 years old.
Carman said the cause of death for each was carbon monoxide poisoning, due to smoke inhalation. Because the state police fire marshal is still investigating the fire, which currently has an "undetermined" cause, Carman said the manner of death for the victims is also undetermined.
Troy Mayor Mike Powers called the victims' deaths "devastating," "tragic," and "heartbreaking."
"My thoughts and prayers and heart go out to them," he said, when asked for comment. "I certainly send my heartfelt condolences to the family."
"It's sad for so many reasons," said Troy Borough Council Vice President Jennifer Malehorn.
She said the couple was young, had settled into their home, and was going to adopt a baby.
"For the family to have to go through this, when it is supposed to be the happiest time of their life, is horrible," she said.
Noting Troy is a small town, she said it's times like these when everybody pulls together and shows their support. She noted that Hoover's Hardware boarded up the home.
Troy High School Assistant Principal Mary Abreu said that Brandon Evans, who she believed graduated in 2006 from Troy High School, was a "fantastic young man" and a good athlete in soccer, basketball and track.
She said he was "very respectful," got along well with others, and was a "good, positive kid."
He was "one you would like to have 50 more of in your building."
"It was very sad," she said, of hearing that Evans had died.
According to Carman, the time of death for both victims was 2:35 a.m.
The state police fire marshal was unavailable for comment Tuesday.
Eric Hrin can be reached at (570) 297-5251; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.