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Identity of man killed in Friday fire in Joplin released

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) _ Authorities suspect lightning may have sparked a deadly fire at a Joplin home.

Fire Chief Jim Furgerson says flames were erupting from the front of 55-year-old Michael Blood’s home and garage when crews arrived Friday. The Joplin Globe reports that he was pulled from the home and rushed to a Joplin hospital. He died after he was transferred to a Springfield burn unit.

Furgerson says preliminary reports indicate the fire may have started because of a lightning strike.