FIRE DEATH – Gary Martin Russell
Loudon County Sheriff Tim Guider announced the identity of a person found dead in a fire at 2122 White Wing Road in Lenoir City as Gary Martin Russell age 40. Russell was identified through dental records.
On Sunday, September 5th, at approximately 3:45 PM, Loudon County Deputies and Fire Rescue personnel were dispatched to a house fire at 2122 White Wing Road. Upon their arrival, the house was fully engulfed in flames. Investigators interviewed witnesses that had seen Russell going in and out of the residence prior to the fire, moving items out, with one witness seeing him carry gasoline containers into the residence and not seeing him leave again. An additional witness said that Russell had called them and advised he had set the house on fire. The State Bomb and Arson team was also summoned to the residence due to the possibility of an arson case involving a fatality.
Once the fire was contained and the scene secured, state and local fire personnel began the tedious work of sifting through the residence for evidence. A body thought to be Russell’s was found inside. There was also other evidence of a firearm near his body, and investigators found the home had been barricaded prior to the fire. Several items, including cash, were found in a truck that was located at the residence. All evidence at this time, including witnesses, phone calls by the deceased, and crime scene evidence show that Mr. Russell did commit suicide.
Sheriff Guider noted that he would like to thank the State Fire and Bomb Team and the Loudon County Fire and Rescue Squad for their fast responses, and also thanked all of the involved agencies for working as a team.