DIAMOND POINT — The cause of a fire that killed a 2-year-old boy March 9 has been determined to be accidental and involved children playing with fire, a Clallam County Fire District No. 3 spokesman said.
“Investigators conducted a detailed search of the structure and interviewed family members in their search for a cause of the fire,” Patrick Young said.
A 2-year-old toddler, Evan Daniel Bellis, died in the blaze that destroyed a double-wide mobile home at 121 Blue Ice Terrace in Diamond Point and a mini-van parked next to it.
The child’s father, Jeffrey Bellis, was seriously burned as he tried to save his son.
The boy’s mother, Heather Cary, and the couple’s 4-year-old son, Jaden, fled the blaze safely.
The family was left homeless.
The investigation into the cause of the blaze focused on a wood stove, Young said.
Investigators, he said, noted that “the door was found open” and said the 4-year-old child who evacuated the house told family members the couch was on fire.
That is what led investigators to conclude the fire was set by children playing with wood or other materials burning in the stove.
The 2-year-old apparently hid in a bedroom closet when fire erupted at about 11 a.m.
Jeffrey Bellis is still receiving periodic treatments at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle for the burns he suffered on his back and arms as he sought his youngest boy in the blazing home.
He was treated at the center for four days after the fire.
A relative from a nearby home was treated for hand injuries but was not inside the home at the time of the fire as was originally reported.
By the time firefighters arrived, flames were shooting out of every opening of the mobile home.
Hours after firefighters doused the blaze, fire investigators confirmed that the body of a child had been found in the remains of the home.
The family has been staying at a donated room at a Port Angeles motel, American Red Cross Olympic Peninsula Chapter representatives said.
A fund for cash donations has been set up at all First Federal bank branches on the Peninsula.
________Sequim-Dungeness Valley Editor Jeff Chew can be reached at 360-681-2391 or at [email protected]