Gas explosion kills one, destroys home


A Humboldt woman died after a gas explosion at her home on Avondale early Saturday morning.

Nancy Crocker, 81, was home alone when the house at 2011 Avondale exploded at about 6:20 a.m. leaving only one exterior wall standing.

Just down the street from Station 2 of the Humboldt Fire Department, firefighters coming on day shift heard the explosion and were on the scene in 30 seconds, said Assistant Chief Lee Kail. Firefighters just getting off work on their way home heard the call and within minutes a dozen or more were on the scene.

The fire was quickly exterminated on one end of the home. Crocker was found in another area, seriously injured from the blast. She was airlifted to Memphis and passed away Saturday night.

The blast collapsed all but one exterior wall of the home. Kail said the report would show a natural gas leak as the cause of the explosion. It was hard to pinpoint the leak but he suspects it was under the home and had been building eventually seeping into the house.  The home was likely built in the 1950s, Kail said.

A longtime member of Avondale Baptist Church nearby her home, Mrs. Crocker was memorialized there Sunday with flowers on her favorite pew.

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