House fire kills 18-year-old high school senior in Ohio

Published: Nov. 16, 2023 at 12:43 AM CST
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CARROLLTON, Ohio (WOIO/Gray News) - An Ohio community is mourning an 18-year-old high school senior who died when flames engulfed his family’s home.

Carrollton Village Fire Departent Chief Shane Thomas said his department and others were called to a house fire with entrapment at 11:47 p.m. Saturday in rural Carroll County. Firefighters arrived 12 minutes later to find the two-story house was already fully engulfed in flames, WOIO reports.

Aiden McNutt, an 18-year-old Carrollton High School senior, was still on the second floor of the home when firefighters arrived, according to Thomas.

Thomas said McNutt’s parents were in their bedroom in the basement when his father was woken up by the smell of smoke at 11:30 p.m. They went to the main floor and saw the flames were already too far advanced to reach their son, who was in his bedroom on the second floor, Thomas said.

McNutt’s parents yelled for him to jump out of a window, but for unknown reasons, he was unable to escape the house, according to Thomas.

“Heat and smoke goes through the house pretty fast, so there’ll never be a full understanding of why he couldn’t get to a window,” Thomas said.

Before firefighters arrived, McNutt’s mother tried to get back into the house in an attempt to save her son and suffered burns to her hands. Deputies pulled her and her husband back to the end of the driveway, Thomas stated.

Thomas described how hard it was for his firefighters to not be able to get inside the house either, due to the extensive blaze.

Firefighters and the fire marshal were finally able to go inside the house after the flames were extinguished and found McNutt’s body at 7:35 a.m. Sunday, Thomas confirmed.

The initial investigation led firefighters to believe the wood-burning stove the family used to heat the house they have lived in for at least 20 years is to blame for the fire, according to Thomas. Fire officials could not determine what caused the stove to set the house on fire at this time.

Carrollton Exempted Village Schools said in a statement on Monday that McNutt was “a very outgoing student that was a member of the wrestling, track and trap shooting teams. He was also in chamber chorus and academic challenge.”

“He will certainly be missed by all that knew him, but we are all thankful for the great memories and stories that he left behind for us to cherish. The family asks that everyone please accept their request for privacy at this most difficult time, and they are thankful for the prayers and support that they have received,” the statement read.

Cash or check donations for the McNutt family are being collected at Huntington Bank at 1045 Trump Rd NW in Carrollton under “The McNutt Family Donation Fund.”