BIGGERSVILLE – A neighbor said he knew the woman who was found deceased after a trailer fire and explosion in the Biggersville area Friday night.
The neighbor, Robert Strickland, identified the woman as Cynthia Hughey of County Road 514. The trailer where she lived was obliterated.
Alcorn County Coroner Jay Jones could not identify the victim at this time. He said the body will be sent to the state crime lab for identification.
Hughey worked in the cafeteria at the school in Biggersville and was a nice lady, Strickland said, adding that she was probably in her 50s.
Alcorn School District Superintendent Larry Mitchell lamented the passing of Hughey, saying she was a “really nice lady” and a “hardworking person.” Hughey was “certainly an asset” to the school district and “will be missed,” Mitchell added.
Hughey previously worked at the former Rienzi school and then moved to the school in Biggersville, Mitchell noted.
Strickland said he spoke to Hughey about every day and that she lived next door to her mom.
Hughey attended Oak Grove C.M.E. Church across the street from her house. The church also had damage from the blast.
Strickland said he was inside his house watching a movie when the explosion happened. It felt as though the explosion picked up his house and then dropped it back down, he said. His house was also damaged, but no one in his home was hurt.
Debris was widely spread after the blast, and some material was in the trees and power lines.
After the blast, Strickland went outside to see what happened and to find out if anyone was inside the trailer when it blew up.
Officials from the state fire marshal’s office were investigating the scene Saturday morning.
The debris field was reportedly scattered 200 yards. The cause of the explosion is unclear.
Jones said it is standard procedure to send bodies to the state crime lab after fires to determine if the death was caused by the fire, explosion or some other means. The fact that the body is being sent to the state crime does not mean foul play was involved, he noted. Corinth Today has no indication foul play was involved.
The lab can do testing, such as DNA, to identify victims, he noted. Jones said an identification could be made in the next couple of weeks.
The fire and explosion occurred about 4.5 miles from U.S. Highway 45 in the Oak Grove community.