Man who jumped from burning building in Garden City dies

akelley@thesunnews.comApril 21, 2014 

The husband of a woman who died on Easter morning in a fire was pronounced dead on Monday.

Joel Lamb Jr., 46, of Timmonsville died after noon on Monday at Grand Strand Medical Center, according to Horry County Deputy Coroner Darris Fowler. Fowler said Lamb died from injuries he received when he jumped out of the burning home in an attempt to escape, Fowler said.

Lamb’s 38-year-old wife, Melissa, died at the fire scene about 4 a.m. Sunday. Horry County Chief Deputy Coroner Tamara Willard said Monday that the preliminary cause of Melissa Lamb’s death is asphyxiation from smoke inhalation.

Survivors of the blaze include one adult and three children – whose names were not released Monday. They were taken to Grand Strand Medical Center and Waccamaw Community Hospital, but their conditions were not available late Monday.

The blaze remains under investigation.

Crews from the Murrells Inlet-Garden City and Horry County fire departments responded to a three-story raised beach house on Calhoun Drive in Garden City around 3:50 a.m. for a reported fire.

The fire began on the ground floor of the home that is split into two vacation rental units, according to Carrie Spielman, who lives on Calhoun Drive.

The fire was contained to one unit and was under control within 45 minutes, according to Murrells Inlet/Garden City Beach fire Capt. Chuck Petrella.

He said the fire activated the smoke alarms.

Petrella said fire investigators are working to determine the cause of the fire. Officials at Murrells-Inlet Garden City Fire Rescue could not be reached for comment Monday.

The Garden City Beach fire was the second deadly fire during the weekend.

On Saturday, Murrells Inlet-Garden City Fire Rescue officials said 72-year-old Murrells Inlet resident John Long died after a fire. Georgetown County coroner Kenny Johnson said Long died from multi-system failure from injuries sustained in the fire on Lotus Court.

The Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office is seeking information on the Murrells Inlet fire, which occurred at 9 a.m. Saturday.

Sheriff’s deputies said they took Long and three others from the fire to Waccamaw Community Hospital.

Anyone with information can send an anonymous tip by texting “GCSOTIP” followed by the message to 274637.

The American Red Cross is assisting both families, and others after a total of 10 fires during the holiday weekend, said agency executive director Nanci Conley. A total of 26 people are receiving help from the Red Cross with their immediate needs including temporary lodging, food, essential hygiene items, health services and emotional support.

Both incidents remain under investigation.

Contact AMANDA KELLEY at 626-0381, or follow her at Twitter.com/TSN_akelley.

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