Elderly woman dies in Kershaw house fire, family members say

KERSHAW, S.C. — One woman is dead after a house fire that happened Monday morning in Lancaster County.

Officials with Lancaster County Fire Rescue said they sent crews to a house fire around 9 a.m. on West Welsh Street in Kershaw.

Neighbors said they saw flames and smoke pouring from the front windows of the house.

"The fire was already coming out the windows, busting the windows," neighbor Mary Smith said.

Lancaster’s fire marshal told Channel 9 that the flames were contained to the front of the home and Bonnie Hilton's body was found in the living room area.

Family members told Channel 9 that Hilton, 83, was on oxygen. One neighbor told Channel 9 that she heard an explosion during the fire, which she thought was the victim’s oxygen tank.

She knew there wasn't time to save Hilton.

"It really upset me,” Smith said. “I wanted to run in there and get Bonnie, but the flames were just coming out the windows.”

Hilton's daughter said she checked on her mother every morning, and the fire happened just before she went to the house.

Neighbors told Channel 9 that Hilton had lived on West Welsh Street for more than 40 years and that her children grew up in the house.

Officials said they don’t yet know what caused the fire. Channel 9 has been told that South Carolina Law Enforcement Division agents will investigate.

The fire was not considered suspicious and appears to be accidental, officials said Monday.