| News

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Two people found dead in Clairton from apparent carbon monoxide poisoning

Andrw Russell | Tribune Review
Two men died Saturday night from carbon monoxide poisoning in a Clairton home.William Chapman, 55 and the homeowner, and his long-time friend Gary Townsend, 48, were killed by the gas in the home on Mitchell Avenue in Clairton, Saturday, January 19, 2013.

Email Newsletters

Sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013, 5:48 p.m.

Two men died on Saturday night from an apparent carbon monoxide poisoning in a Clairton home, authorities said.

Rescuers needed more than an hour to clear the house on the 300 block of Mitchell Avenue of the deadly, odorless, colorless gas before they could enter, said Clairton Fire Chief John Lattanzi.

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office identified the victims as William Chapman, 56, the homeowner, and his longtime friend Gary Townsend, 47, also of Clairton.

Autopsies will be performed on Sunday, the medical examiner's office said.

Lattanzi was unable to identify the source of the carbon monoxide, but said that “99 percent of the time it's the furnace.”

No one else was in the two-story brick home at the time, he said.

Chapman had lots of family in Clairton and “got along with everybody,” his nephew George Chapman said.

He hosted cookouts for his many nearby cousins and other family members, he said.

Terry Lee, who lived beside William Chapman for the last five years, described him as “a very nice guy.”

Emergency responders arrived on the scene about 5 p.m., Lattanzi said.

As soon as they opened the front door, a hazardous gas detector on the responder's medical bag sounded, he said.

Alex Nixon is a staff writerfor Trib Total Media. He canbe reached at 412-320-7829or

Add Alex Nixon to your Google+ circles.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.




Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Penguins centermen enjoying better faceoff success rate
  2. Police charge New Florence man in St. Clair officer’s killing
  3. Penn State coach fires offensive coordinator
  4. Fatal HOV lane crash in Ross under investigation
  5. New Kensington man killed in North Buffalo crash
  6. Editorial cartoons: Nov. 30-Dec. 6, 2015
  7. Penguins notebook: Johnston agrees with Dubinsky suspension
  8. Indiana Twp. liver transplant recipient, 2, takes steps toward normal life
  9. Travelers advised to arrive 2 hours early for flights from Pittsburgh International Airport
  10. Thomas Jefferson uses defense, running game to capture WPIAL title
  11. Central Catholic wins 5th WPIAL football title