2 Bodies Found In Rubble Of Home Explosion

By Tom Mustin

FIRESTONE, Colo. (CBS4) – Authorities say the bodies of two people were recovered in the basement of the home that exploded Monday night.

Neighbors say the victims are believed to be Mark Martinez and his brother-in-law.

Stunned family members waited behind yellow police tape as construction crews picked through the rubble of an exploded home in Firestone.

“Probably the loudest concussion I’ve ever heard,” said neighbor John Anderson.

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(credit: CBS)

On Monday night the two story home on Twilight Avenue collapsed and went up in flames. Mountain Range High School science teacher Erin Martinez and her husband Mark were inside along with two others.

“We heard the blast and ran to the home,” neighbor Ben Chapman told CBS4’a Tom Mustin.

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(credit: CBS)

Chapman says the explosion had ripped the walls apart. He saw Erin Martinez inside.

“She was completely pinned with the top half of her body hanging upside down. Her legs were pinned under some heavy debris. She was conscious and trying to get out, moving her arms a little and trying to wiggle out,” Chapman said.

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Chapman says a construction crew arrived at the same time and used a forklift to lift the roof of the home. Chapman grabbed a hose and tried to tried to douse the home when flames erupted.

“The fire just exploded. It went from a little smoke to fully engulfed in a minute,” said Chapman. “It was very chaotic. Everyone was panicking. Trying to get her out as quickly as we could.”

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(credit: CBS)

The construction crews pulled Erin Martinez free. She was badly burned but alive.

“I could tell she was in pretty bad shape,” said Chapman.

Erin Martinez was airlifted to the hospital in critical condition.

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Family members on Tuesday morning near the crime scene (credit: CBS)

A child was also taken in for treatment. Erin Martinez’s husband is among two people missing. Investigators are still looking into the cause of the blast.

“It’s going to be a very slow process. It’s going to take a couple of days,” said Summer Campos with the Frederick-Firestone Fire District.

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(credit: CBS)

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As family members wait for answers, Chapman spoke for his fellow neighbors.

“Just thinking about the family and hoping and praying they get through this. Wish we could see them right now and give them a hug,” Chapman said.

Investigators confirm the family had been installing a hot water heater when the blast happened. The bodies found have not been officially identified.

The Martinez family has set up a GoFundMe page.

Tom Mustin is CBS4’s Weekend Anchor. He has been with CBS4 since 2002, and is always looking for great story ideas. Connect with Tom on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @TomCBS4.

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