Cause of deadly December house fire ruled inconclusive

Extensive damage from fire that claimed Andrew Debogorski's life left investigations with scarce clues

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The cause of a devastating December house fire that claimed the life of well-known Yellowknifer Andrew Debogorski will likely never be known.

Investigators probing the deadly blaze, which broke inside Debogorski’s 51A Avenue home on the evening of Dec. 28 of last year, were unable to determine exactly what caused the fire.

“Because of the extent of the damage to the structure and its contents, the cause and origin of the fire is undetermined,” a spokesperson for the territory’s fire marshal told Yellowknifer earlier this week.

Thirty-two-year-old Debogorski, a newly-wed young father of two, died after being trapped inside the residence, which was engulfed in flames.

Debogorski’s wife, along with his young children, escaped the blaze, according to a statement released by the Yellowknife Fire Division shortly after the fatal fire.

Debogorski, known to friends as Bouge, battled Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) leading up to his death. He used a wheelchair and relied on a special device to communicate after losing his ability to walk and talk.

The fire marshal’s investigation into the fire is closed.

Yellowknifers rallied together following the tragic Christmas-time fire, donating thousands to help support Debogorski’s young family displaced by the blaze.