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Family and friends react to suicide connected to Russia fire
RUSSIA, N.Y. (WKTV) - One man is dead after flames ripped through a home and a barn at 205 Grant Road in the Town of Russia late Wednesday night.
Authorities said it was a suicide. The property owner, allegedly, drove his truck at 110 miles per hour into a front loader parked in the driveway.
Officials are still unsure if the truck accident caused the fire, or if the barn was already up in flames at the time.
The fire engulfed the home and fully functioning dairy farm and then spread across the street.
It took 13 different fire departments over six hours to extinguish the flames.
"We immediately started pulling lines and extinguishing it," said Scot Burritt, Chief, Poland Fire Department. "We had to call in mutual aid. We are sitting on top of a hill that has pretty much no water supply."
State police will not be releasing the name of the man who died because it was a suicide. Family members said it was Brad Davis who killed himself.
All 300 animals on the farm are safe.
Neighbors told NEWSChannel 2 Davis was a considerate man who cared about his family, community, and employees.
" I was very surprised by what happened," said Brandon Roark who worked for Davis on the farm a few years ago. "He was a very nice and hardworking man."
Davis' daughter reached out to NEWSChannel 2 via Facebook. She wrote: "I want him to be remembered as the most hardworking man there is. He was successful in everything he did. He loved my sister and I so much."
State police have not yet determined the cause of the fire. The case is still under investigation.