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Cause of Rural Valley fatal fire remains unknown

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Thursday, July 17, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

Investigators were unable to determine the cause of a July 4 house fire in Rural Valley that killed one woman and left her family homeless.

“The damage was so bad that we couldn't determine the cause,” said Trooper Duwayne Baird, a fire marshal with the state police in Butler. “It was just a very large pile of debris.”

Regina Dawn Pearce, 45, died of smoke inhalation in the home. Her son, daughter and her daughter's boyfriend survived.

The Red Cross provided survivors with financial support for food, clothing and shelter, according to Dana Bauer, executive director of the organization's Westmoreland, Indiana and Armstrong chapters.

Julie E. Martin is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-543-1303, x1315, or

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