BADIN, N.C. — Fire and emergency crews are investigating after two people died in a massive early morning house fire in Stanly County.
The fire started around 5 a.m. Wednesday in a house on Jackson Street in Badin.
When Channel 9 crews arrived, smoke was billowing out of a collapsed roof with flames occasionally coming from the home.
Officials confirmed the two men who died in the fire were cousins and in their 60's, but said they will not release names until they get a positive ID from the medical examiner.
Neighbor Derrick Williams grew up next to the victims and said he was getting ready to go to work when he spotted flames shooting out of a window.
"When I got down there, I went down there to see if anybody was in there, was hollering their names, and I couldn't get nobody to respond," said Williams.
Eyewitness News reporter Glenn Counts learned the neighborhood is a close knit and family members from across the state came to show their respects
Jonae Hanna, a cousin of the victims, told Channel 9 they were, "Great men, they are everybody's favorite, our family is heartbroken were shocked and were just devastated."
One of the victims was a retired marine.
"I've known them all my life, they are our church members and they were just nice people," said Williams.
This is an ongoing investigation. Stay with Channel 9 and wsoctv.com for the latest.
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Cox Media Group