UPDATE: Fire victim UWEC student - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UPDATE: Names of fire victims released; One UWEC student died, another in critical condition


Eau Claire (WQOW) - A UW-Eau Claire student has died and another has life-threatening injuries following a fire on Water Street Monday morning.

Ross Livermore, a 21-year-old from Stillwater, Minnesota, was killed in the fire in his upstairs apartment.  Jacob Clarkson, a 22-year-old from Stillwater, is at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis in critical condition with serious burns.

A police detective, who was on his way to work, spotted smoke coming from the building at 630 1/2 Water Street.  He went into the building to help.  Two people were able to get out safely.  Livermore and Clarkson were found unconscious by rescue personnel inside.

"It's a shock to the system whenever you have a sudden event like this where a student loses his life and another student is really badly injured.  It sent a ripple effect to a really close knit community here.  Our students really have a lot of close relationships and so it's the kind of thing that we, as a university, really need to come together to support each other.  We're here to help our students and their families make it through this tragedy and to provide as much support as we can," said Assistant Chancellor for Facilities and University Relations Mike Rindo.

The investigation into what caused the fire is underway.  An electrical engineer will be on scene Tuesday to inspect the damage.


Update from UWEC

To the UW-Eau Claire Campus Community,

We are sad to share with you the names of the following UW-Eau Claire students, all from Stillwater, Minn., who were victims of a fire this morning at their Water Street residence. Our hearts go out to their families and friends.

Ross Livermore, 21 a sophomore computer science major who was on leave from the university this semester, was killed in the fire.

Jacob Clarkson, 22, a senior computer science major, is at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis with serious burns.

Garret Isakson, 21, a junior management major, was treated at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire and released.

Casey Malan, 21, a senior English major, was treated at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire and released.

The university, UW-Eau Claire Foundation and the Red Cross are assisting the students left homeless by this tragedy. The Student Services Commission of the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate also is accepting donations for the displaced students; items may be dropped off at the University Service Center or the Student Organizations Complex in the Davies Student Center.

Our Dean of Students office will provide additional information as it becomes available regarding memorial services for Ross Livermore and updates in the condition of Jacob Clarkson.

Students, faculty and staff in need of emergency or urgent counseling assistance are encouraged to contact Northwest Connections Crisis Line at 888-552-6642, Emergency 9-1-1, Great Rivers 2-1-1 or your resident assistant or hall director. As we all process this loss, I encourage students to contact Counseling Services during regular business hours by calling 715-836-5521 or stopping by Old Library 2122. Faculty and staff members are encouraged to contact the Employee Assistance Program counselor in Counseling Services.

Please join me in continuing to keep these students and their loved ones in your thoughts in the aftermath of this tragic event.

Gilles Bousquet
Interim Chancellor, UW-Eau Claire

Press release from Eau Claire Police Dept.

On Monday, October 8, 2012 at 5:57 a.m., an off-duty Eau Claire police detective observed flames coming from the windows in the upstairs apartment at 630 1/2 Water St.

Police officers arrived on scene but were unable to enter due to the progression of the fire.

Two male residents from the apartment were able to escape while two other male residents were still inside.

Fire personnel arrived at this location, made entry into the apartment, and located two unconscious people inside.

Personnel from both Eau Claire Fire and Eau Claire Police attempted resuscitation efforts on these two individuals and both were transported to a local hospital by ambulance.

Ross A. Livermore, date of birth 12/01/1990, was pronounced dead at the hospital. An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, October 9, to determine the cause of death.

The second individual transported from this apartment had life-threatening injuries.

Three of the residents from this apartment are University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire students. The University Administration has been notified.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation by the Eau Claire Fire Department.


Eau Claire (Press Release from the Eau Claire Fire Department) -

The ECFD responded to a report of a structure fire. Upon arrival there was a report of victims trapped in the building. Smoke and fire was showing from the building and the first in Engine deployed a 1.75" hose line to attempt to knock the fire down and search the building.

Two occupants escaped and two victims were removed from the building by ECFD Fire Fighters. Both were transported to Mayo Eau Claire by Paramedic Ambulance. Of the two victims transported, one is a fatality and the other was airlifted to Hennepin County Medical Center.

The fire is currently under investigation by the ECFD and the ECPD.

At the time of this release Engines crews are still on scene performing overhaul and checking for fire extension.

Damage is estimated at $122,000.


Update: Eau Claire (Press Release from UWEC) - A fire this morning in the 600 block of Water Street has claimed the life of a UW-Eau Claire student and injured three others. The following email message has been sent to students, faculty and staff from Interim Chancellor Gilles Bousquet:

To the UW-Eau Claire Campus Community,

It is with great sadness that I am sharing with you the tragic news that a fire early this morning at a Water Street apartment has taken the life of a UW-Eau Claire student and left another seriously injured.

A third UW-Eau Claire student is being treated at an Eau Claire hospital for injuries sustained in the fire, while a fourth student was treated for minor injuries and released.

Emergency crews were called to the 600 block of Water Street early this morning after smoke was seen coming from the building in which the students' apartment was housed.

We are working closely with Eau Claire Police and Fire officials as they are gathering information about the circumstances of the fire and our students who were in the building at the time of the fire.

We also are providing support to the students involved in the fire and their families.

While we understand that our campus community is anxious to know more about our students who were involved in this tragedy, we must be respectful of their families and loved ones.

We will share the identities of the students who were killed or injured in this morning's fire once law enforcement officials have assured us that their families have been notified.

As we wait for more information, please join me in keeping these students and their loved ones in your thoughts during this very difficult time.

Gilles Bousquet


Update: Eau Claire (WQOW) - A fire has emergency crews on scene in Eau Claire. According to the Eau Claire fire deputy chief Duane Grunst, the blaze, on Water Street, has taken one life.

The building is at 630 Water Street in between the American Legion and The Water Street Deli and Grocery. It's believed that the business on the bottom offered rental properties to students and the second floor was apartments.

According to Grunst, shortly before 6:00 this morning an Eau Claire police detective was passing by when he noticed smoke coming out of the building. He was able to rescue two residents on the top floor but was unable to rescue two others. Fire crews then arrived and got the other two out of the building but one person has since died.

Traffic on Water Street from 6th to 7th Avenue is closed while crews are on scene. 


Eau Claire (WQOW) - A fire has emergency crews responding in Eau Claire. The blaze, on Water Street, is still being battled by fire crews.

The building is at 630 Water Street in between the American Legion and the Water Street Deli and grocery. It's believed that the business on the bottom offered rental properties to students and the second floor was apartments.

Traffic on Water Street from 6th to 7th Avenue is closed as crews are on scene. 

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