Deadly Fires In Reno and Sparks

By: Alana Adams & James Steiner
By: Alana Adams & James Steiner

A teenager was killed and older her sister critically injured in a Sparks house fire early yesterday. And in another fire, several people were hurt -- two critically -- in a blaze at a Reno apartment building.
14-year-old Olivia Nordoff of Sparks died about six o'clock
yesterday (Wednesday) morning from injuries she suffered in the
fire that engulfed her home shortly after midnight.
Her 19-year-old sister, Veronica Verso, is being treated in the
intensive care unit at Washoe Medical Center. Four Sparks police
officers involved in rescue attempts also were treated for smoke
inhalation.
Five people were hospitalized in the Reno apartment fire,
including two who were critically burned. One was a woman who
dropped her six-month-old daughter out a third-floor window to a
neighbor waiting below and then jumped through the window herself.
The other was her 15-year-old son who was rescued by a
firefighter.
27-year-old Julie McDonnell underwent surgery at Washoe Medical
Center for internal injuries she sustained when she landed on the
ground.
Her 15-month-old infant suffered burns on 70 percent of his
body. He was transported to Shriner's Hospital in Sacramento for
treatment where his condition was not known.
Her six-month-old daughter and a four-year-old son were treated
for smoke inhalation, along with another man who was in the
apartment and a neighbor.
Fire officials originally thought that fire might have been a
case of arson but the preliminary evidence now suggests it was
started by the four-year-old playing with a toaster in the bedroom.

The Reno fire broke out just before 10 o'clock yesterday
morning, forcing the evacuation of all 12 units in the building at
the Sherwood Forest Apartments on Robinhood Drive west of the
Peppermill hotel-casino.
The mother of the two girls burned in the Sparks fire called in
the alarm about 12:15 yesterday morning. The house in the 900 block
of La Sierra northeast of the intersection of East McCarran and
Prater Way was fully engulfed in flames by the time fire engines
arrived.
That fire apparently started in the living room. The two girls
were trapped in bedrooms upstairs. Verso is a senior at Reed High
School.
Fire officials say the home did not appear to have a smoke
detector.


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