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2 Dead In Five-Alarm Leonia Fire

Scene of a fire at a home in Leonia on Jan. 30, 2014. (credit: CBS 2)

Scene of a fire at a home in Leonia on Jan. 30, 2014. (credit: CBS 2)

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LEONIA, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) – Two people died Thursday in a five-alarm blaze that destroyed a multi-family home in Leonia.

Fire officials said the walls collapsed in the Maple Street home shortly after the fire broke out around 5:30 a.m. Thursday, CBS 2 reported.

Gordon Coleman told The Record that his sister Harriet Coleman and her daughter Ruth were feared trapped in the home. He said his sister is a school crossing guard and his 34-year-old niece attends a day program for people with special needs.

Coleman said his brother Howard, who lived in a separate apartment in the same home, was able to rescue their 94-year-old mother, who lived with the two other women.

It was not immediately confirmed whether Harriet and Ruth Coleman were the victims who died.

Leonia Fire Chief Thomas Rowe said two police officers who rushed into the burning home were treated for smoke inhalation.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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