The State Fire Marshal’s Office says a 74-year-old man died in a house fire in the northern Maine town of St. Francis Wednesday morning. 

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A passerby reported smoke billowing from the home at 1157 Main Street shortly after 7:00 a.m.

St. Francis and Allagash Fire Departments responded to the blaze and remained on scene throughout the morning.

The Fire Marshal’s Office says the body of Patrick Deignan was found in the basement of the one-story house, near the wood stove.  The blaze was likely caused by using a flammable liquid—possibly gasoline—to start a fire in the stove, investigators said.

Deignan lived alone in the ranch style house on Main Street (Route 161).  His dog also perished in the fire.