Death of 10-year-old girl under investigation
ADRIAN — A 10-year-old girl was found dead Thursday night, a victim of a fire that ignited round bales of hay at a farm west of Adrian.
The Adrian Fire Department was dispatched at 6:50 p.m. Thursday to the Todd Heideman farm at 25773 Ahlers Ave. The body of Perri Heideman, 10, was discovered after the Adrian and Ellsworth fire departments extinguished the fire.
“The Adrian Fire Department, assisted by the Ellsworth Fire Department, were working on putting out the fire, when a short time later the family noticed that Perri was missing,” Nobles County Sheriff Kent Wilkening said.
“We did a search of the property and didn’t find anything,” Wilkening added. “Once the fire was put out, the fire department started to search and take the bales apart, and they found her laying amongst the bales. She was pronounced deceased at the scene.”
The case remains under investigation, and a cause of the fire has not been determined. According to Wilkening, the fire marshal will give a full report next week on the possible cause of the blaze.
“He was out Thursday night to investigate, and told us that the full report would be given next week,” Wilkening said.
The Adrian Fire Department was assisted by the Ellsworth Fire Department and the Nobles County Sheriff’s Office.
Firefighters were called back to the scene Friday morning to put out some minor flare-ups.
According to Wilkening, a debriefing to help firefighters cope with the incident is being arranged as soon as possible.
Ellsworth Middle School, which Heideman attended, provided counseling services Friday for students, and they will continue throughout next week as needed.
Daily Globe Reporter Erin Trester
may be reached at 376-7322.