Man killed in Lawrence County fire remembered as father, grandfather

(Courtesy: Lawrence County Sheriff's Department)

LAWRENCE COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A man was found dead early Sunday morning inside a home destroyed by fire in Lawrence County.

According to the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department, the Ethridge Fire Department responded during the early morning hours to a fire at a residence on Ethridge Red Hill Road, not far from Highway 241.

“We were called after the fire department got here and realized there may be someone still inside,” said Captain Adam Brewer with the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department.

Once the fire was out, deputies said the body of 50-year-old Connis Ray Blake was discovered inside the home.

Blake was a father of seven and had 17 grandkids.

His daughter, Rebekah Spence, lives right down the street and watched Blake’s house go up in flames.

“The house was already fully engulfed in flames,” said Spence. “I knew if he was in there, there wouldn’t be any chance he would come out.”

Connis Blake’s son, Brandon Blake, said he hopes investigators can find out what caused the fire.

“I’m just hoping they do their best and find out what happened quickly, and give us all some closure,” said Brandon Blake.

Authorities with the Ethridge Fire Department, West End Fire Department, Henryville Fire Department, Gandy Fire Department, Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department, State of TN Bomb and Arson Division, and TBI are involved in the investigation.

It is standard protocol for state investigators to get involved in fatal fire cases.

Sheriff’s deputies say foul play is not suspected at this time.

Investigative teams spent Sunday recovering charred evidence from what’s left of the house.