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Victims of Vancouver blaze identified


May 8, 2008
By The Canadian Press

May 8, 2008, North Vancouver, B.C. - Arson has been ruled out as the cause of a fire that killed three elderly women in North Vancouver on Tuesday night.

RCMP say the fire started in a first-floor apartment which belonged to one of the women who died in the blaze. Two of the women who died – Annetta Meester, 80, and Rita Phillips, 78, – collapsed in the lobby just steps from safety while trying to escape the building.


Ilse Dragossy, 84, was found dead on the third floor of the building.


The quickly moving fire engulfed all the suites in one corner of the three-storey structure.


Police says survivors who lived in the building will not be able to move back home for at least a year while repairs are made.


Fire officials estimate it will be several days before residents can even return to their homes.