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Man, 79, perishes in bungalow fire


A 79-year-old Pasadena man died Tuesday morning after a fast-moving fire engulfed his wood-frame bungalow, Anne Arundel County fire officials said.

The body of Henry A. Nevrkla of 1320 River Road was found by firefighters by the front door of his home, where he lived alone. An autopsy will be performed.

Battalion Chief Gary Sheckells said the apparent cause of the fire was a faulty section of a wood stove. "We don't know whether he fell asleep, panicked or was just overcome by smoke," Chief Sheckells said. "The pipe leading up from the stove was worn away, and embers from the fire escaped into the house and caught fire to combustibles."

A neighbor reported being awakened about 7:10 a.m. by the blast of a boat horn from Whites Cove. The boat's skipper apparently saw the house in flames and wanted to alert someone on land, Chief Sheckells said.

Two alarms were sounded, but 45 firefighters were unable to control the intense blaze until after it had destroyed the structure.

"We had people trying to get into the front door but were beaten back by the heat," Chief Sheckells said.

He said Mr. Nevrkla had lived in the house many years.

His wife died within the past year, the chief said.

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