Beaver Dam house fire victims identified by family

WESTFORD, Wis. (WBAY) - A house fire near Beaver Dam killed a woman and injured an elderly man in the late hours of Thanksgiving Day.

Eleanor "Ellie" Neumann and Ruben Neumann (Source: The Neumann family)

Our sister station WMTV says the family identified them as 82-year-old Eleanor "Ellie" Neumann, and her husband, 91-year-old Ruben.

The fire was reported at about 10:20 Thursday night on Watercress Lane.

Eleanor was rescued from the house by firefighters but succumbed to her injuries at the hospital.

Neighbor Mathew Breselow described the rescue efforts as heroic.

"We looked out the window the deputy kicked the back door in and ran in without anything. You can’t ask a level of heroism; that goes above and beyond of what that deputy did. I mean, no fire gear, kicked the door in. That was shocking," Breselow recounted. "I couldn't believe he did that."

Ruben was outside the house before firefighters arrived. He's in the burn unit at a Madison hospital, the family told WMTV. He's expected to recover from his injuries.

The neighbor described Ellie Neumann as a "staple in our community."

"She is probably one of the sweetest ladies I have ever known," Breselow, said. "We would be out with the dogs, she would come over and say 'hi.' She is going to be missed."

The fire was put out by Beaver Dam firefighters with assistance from other fire departments. There are no specifics about the fire at this time, and the cause is under investigation by the State Fire Marshal and the Dodge County Sheriff's Office.

The house is on the town line of Westford and Calamus, about two miles west of Beaver Dam.