House fire kills 72-year-old woman in Tuktoyaktuk

Bessie Elias, 72, died from her injuries after firefighters rescued her from a house fire in Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T., Friday night.

Bessie Elias died later from her injuries after being rescued by firefighters

A 72-year-old woman is dead following a house fire in Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T., Friday night.

Bessie Elias died from her injuries after being pulled from the burning building by firefighters.

Fire Chief Stanley Felix says firefighters rescued two women from the burning three-bedroom house.

"We got there about 8:30, pulled out two casualties," he said. "One passed away. We are waiting for the fire marshal's report."

Elias was well-known in the community, as a mother and grandmother and the aunt of Nunakput MLA and N.W.T. Speaker Jackie Jacobson.

Friends say she will be remembered for her generosity, as she would open her home to children of the community, and sometimes fostered children. Elias was also known for her sewing skills.

"One of things that I will always remember about her is her embroidery,"said Clara Bates. "She really embroidered a lot of good, well-made slippers, mukluks, mitts. She just loved her embroidery."

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.