Husband charged with murder, arson in Kitchener house explosion that killed wife

The husband of a woman found dead following a house explosion in Kitchener has been charged with first-degree murder and arson.

Edra Haan, 58, was found dead in the backyard of the home after Aug. 22 explosion

Udo Haan, 58, was arrested Monday and faces charges of first-degree murder, arson and disregard for human life, and two counts of arson damage to property. (Waterloo Regional Police Service/Twitter)

The husband of a woman found dead following a house explosion in Kitchener, Ont., has been charged with first-degree murder and arson.

Udo Haan, 58, has been charged in connection with the death of his wife Edra Haan, whose body was found in the backyard of her home following the explosion around 8 a.m. on Aug. 22. Kitchener is about 110 kilometres west of Toronto.

Udo Haan was hurt in August's explosion and airlifted to a Hamilton hospital with critical injuries.

Police said he remains in hospital under medical care.

He appeared via telephone in a Kitchener court on Tuesday. Udo Haan was ordered not to have contact with several people while he's in custody. 

Udo Haan's next court date is set for Oct.12.

'A lovely soul'

Both Edra and Udo Haan worked for Sun Life Financial at their Waterloo office. The company released a statement after the explosion, saying "our heartfelt condolences and thoughts go out to their families, friends and colleagues."

Tributes to Edra Haan before her funeral saw friends call her "a lovely soul" and a proud mother.

"Your laughter so infectious that it could make the saddest soul smile; and that unique, amazing twinkle in your eyes … they shone of joy and mischievous, and of sincerity and kindness," one woman wrote on the funeral home's tribute page.

The neighbourhood on the quiet residential street that was rocked by the explosion has worked to restore a sense of community. Brock Greenhalgh organized a fundraiser to buy benches to put along the street.

"I'm hoping that this little project can start the conversation about moving forward," Greenhalgh said.

"The community itself was ripped apart back on the 22nd of August, and it's going to take more than benches to do that, but at least it's a step in the right direction."

Edra Haan's body was found in the backyard of a home in Kitchener, Ont., on Aug. 22 after a house explosion. Her husband, Udo Haan, has been charged with first-degree murder and arson. (Facebook)

With files from Kate Bueckert and Peggy Lam