Neighbors mourn house fire victim

Friday, May 12, 2017

Homes needed for cats after Euclid residence destroyed

Neighbors continue to keep a watchful eye on the home of Marty Dorn, who died in a house fire Monday night at 600 Euclid.

Dorn, 58, who had lived in the neighborhood since 2002, was well known to his neighbors.

“He had a big heart,” said Matt Wages, who lived across the street.

Neighbors agreed that Dorn extended that big heart to questionable characters, homeless persons and others who may have been inclined to take advantage of him. Numerous calls were made to police on Tuesday about persons gathering around the property and crossing the police line without authorization.

“We received several reports that people were crossing the fire barricade tape and looking around in the yard and house area, but nothing was confirmed about anything being taken from the residence,” said George Daoud, Monett police chief. “The officers who encountered people at the scene they were just looking from outside the taped off area. We have spoken with the homeowner and insurance company who are going to secure the house and remove the barricade tape.”

“Everybody is working together,” said neighbor Heather Cure. “Marty had people that really loved him.”

Dorn’s big heart extended to pets. At one time, he had 20 cats, which he had reduced to an official list of eight, catalogued in a notebook for scheduled healthcare. Two of the cats perished in the fire. Cure said four remained, walking around the neighborhood disoriented. Neighbors were feeding them, and one had been taken away by a friend. Cure hoped others would take the remaining cats in.

“They were very well loved,” Cure said.

Concern around the neighborhood continued over Dorn’s miniature Doberman pincer, Jesse James, who had not been seen since the fire. Animal control officer Glenn Palade was also looking for him. Cure said the dog, which was wearing a lime green collar, is still missing as of Thursday afternoon.

Karissa Strong, who lives on the next block, has been trying to coordinate with the family and said Dorn had been the high school boyfriend of her mother, Mona Strong. He had moved into the neighborhood to stay close to her family. She had been leading the search to find Dorn’s dog.

Wages, who said Dorn had become a good neighbor after having a religious experience several years ago, echoed the sentiment of the neighbors in saying they all hoped foul play had not been a factor in Dorn’s death.

Firefighters found Dorn’s body after battling the blaze on Monday. The house had been completely engulfed by the time they arrived. The fire marshal was unable to determine a cause for the fire, the first fatal blaze in Monett since 1992.

“When we get the autopsy report back including the toxicology report, it will be about six to eight weeks,” Daoud said. “So far in the investigation, there do not appear to be any suspicious circumstances involved in this case. We are just being thorough to make sure we do not miss anything in the investigation.”

Funeral services for Dorn are pending with Buchanan Funeral Home in Monett.

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