Elderly amputee dies in Buxton house fire

An elderly amputee died in a fire of unknown origin at his home, at Middle Walk, Buxton, on the East Coast of Demerara yesterday.

Dennis Marks, 71, was inside his home when the fire started around 5:30pm and neighbours said the flames were too much for efforts to be made to save the elderly man. Marks, who had been a carpenter, had both his legs amputated three years ago as a result of complications from diabetes.

“The house ketch ah fire suh fast like when we try fuh bucket brigade fuh out it,

Flames last night in the yard where the house was gutted
Flames last night in the yard where the house was gutted

is like it just get stronger and stronger… Is a pitch pine house and when them sort a wood ketch is problems,” a resident, who provided his name as “Kevin,” told Stabroek News.

Kevin said that the fire service took some time to arrive at the scene. However, he added that even if it had arrived early, there would have still been no chance of saving Marks’ life.

Two other residents, who declined to provide their names, said that Marks grew up in the same home with his now deceased mother and for some years he had occupied the building with his common-law wife, who took care of him. This newspaper was told that although she would take care of Marks, she no longer resided with him.

His sister, Claudette Blakeney, said that around 8am yesterday she visited her brother and he did not respond to her as she was speaking to him.

“Since morning I left with me husband and he was there in the house and I told him that I was coming back because I left along with my husband to a friend’s house to pluck some chicken and bout like couple hours after a boy come and said me brother house pon fire; I drop everything and run, asking everybody where Dennis deh,” Blakeney said. She said her brother’s amputations were due to diabetes and since then his mobility had been limited. Nevertheless, his wife, whose name was given as ‘Elaine,’ cared for him, she added.

“Aunty Elaine use to take care of the man, she use to sell broom and mine he like if it was she child. She was real good to him,” another relative said. Marks, who had three children, was described as a loving and caring father, who took care of his family.

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