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Memorial fund for Wichita fire victim set up to buy smoke alarms

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, at 4:05 p.m.
  • Updated Saturday, March 22, 2014, at 8:05 a.m.

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The family of a fatal fire victim is setting up a memorial fund to help buy smoke alarms.

Cliff Davis, 41, died as the result of a fire early Saturday morning at his duplex in the 100 block of West Zimmerly. The fund will be turned over to the Wichita Fire Department to purchase alarms to be given to residents who don’t have the money to buy their own, said Tylee Davis, Cliff’s sister.

“My brother would have loved that,” she said Tuesday. “If it saves one life, we’ve done something.”

Fire officials have said a working smoke alarm wasn’t found in the duplex.

“We’re grateful for the donation,” said Capt. Stuart Bevis, who heads up the fire department’s investigative unit. “We’ve had organizations donate (alarms) in the past, and we’ve been able to put them to good use.”

Wichita had 11 fire deaths in 2013, a little more than twice the city’s average, fire officials said.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation. Davis, a Wichita native who worked at at Harry Street Carpet, was in the duplex alone at the time.

He was taken to a hospital with burns and smoke inhalation and later died. Result from an autopsy haven’t been released, but Tylee Davis said the family was told by authorities that her brother died of smoke inhalation and not burns.

Anyone interested in donating should make checks payable to the Clifford Davis Memorial Fund and send them to either Harry Street Carpet, 211 W. Harry, Wichita, KS, 67213; or to Emprise Bank, 4833 S. Broadway, Wichita, KS, 67216.

Reach Rick Plumlee at 316-268-6660 or rplumlee@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @rickplumlee.

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