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Mayor: Ocean Isle blaze that killed 7 may have started on deck

OCEAN ISLE BEACH (AP) -- The mayor of Ocean Isle Beach says the fire that killed seven college students at a vacation house may have started on the deck. Mayor Debbie Smith says investigators told her the fire was likely accidental and started either on or near a deck facing a canal on the west side of the house. That side of the building appeared to have suffered the most damage. Though students heard through word of mouth which students survived the fire, the names of the victims had not been announced. But Anna Lee Rhea said her older brother, William, was among the dead. Andrew Rhea made it out of the house alive. Classes were held as scheduled at the University of South Carolina today, but a garnet and black banner with the school's mascot flew at half-staff outside a fraternity house. Black ribbons were wrapped around the columns of another house. The students had gathered at the home for the weekend to enjoy the fleeting beach weather. (Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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