Mother and daughter killed in early-morning house fire in Shelby County

SHELBY COUNTY, Ala. -- An early-morning house fire in Wilton claimed the lives of a mother and daughter, the sheriff's office said in an updated release Friday afternoon.

Shortly after 4 a.m., deputies and five different fire departments, including crews from Brierfield, Dry Valley, West Shelby, Pea Ridge and Montevallo, responded to a full-involved fire at a home occupied by a woman and her daughter, as well as two other unidentified people in the 700 block of Gunlock Road.

Rescue crews transported 40-year-old Kandace Devon Lee to an area hospital, where she has since died from injuries suffered in the fire. Her 9-year-old daughter, Leah Elizabeth Lee, was pronounced deceased at the scene. The other two residents were able to escape the blaze unharmed.

Sheriff Chris Curry offered his condolences to the victims' family in friends in the release.


"It is when something as tragic as this happens that we all struggle to understand it," Curry said. "I am truly sorry for your loss."

At this time, authorities believe the fatal fire was an unfortunate accident and no foul play is believed to have been involved.

"It will be days or weeks before a final determination is made but this tragedy appears to be the result of an accident and not a crime," authorities said.

Alabama Fire Marshal investigators continue to investigate. They will be assisted by the Shelby County Sheriff's Office.



One person died in a house fire in Wilton early Friday morning, according to the Shelby County Sheriff's office. {}Another person was transported to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.

A spokesperson from the State of Alabama's Fire Marshall's Office said that investigators are on the scene. {}They are working with the Sheriff's Office, and the Coroner's Office to determine the cause of the fire.

The fire broke out at about 4:10 A.M., on the 700 block of Gunlock road.{}

Two others at the home escaped the fire.