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  1. #1
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    LA - Nanette Watson Krentel, 49, found dead in house fire, Lacombe, 14 July 2017

    St. Tammany fire district chief's wife believed to be victim in fatal Lacombe house fire


    Nanette Watson Krentel.jpg




    The cause of a fatal Lacombe house fire Friday remains under investigation, according to the state Fire Marshal's Office, and the body that was recovered, though believed to be that of Nanette Krentel, wife of a Covington-area fire chief, has not been officially identified.

    St. Tammany Fire Protection District No. 12 Chief Steve Krentel and his wife lived at the house on Phillip Smith Road in Lacombe.

    Assistant Fire Chief Kris Hines said the department has been "hit on a personal level."

    The St. Tammany Parish Coroner's Office conducted an autopsy but is awaiting DNA results to identify the remains, Chief Deputy State Fire Marshal Brant Thompson said.

    Nanette Krentel, a former preschool teacher, would have turned 50 on Thursday, according to Lori Rondo, a friend from high school days at Archbishop Chapelle High School in Metairie.

    She described her friend as generous and kind, an animal lover and someone who kept up with her former students, even though she had retired from St. Michael's Episcopal Preschool years ago. "She stayed in touch. A lot of teachers don't do that," Rondo said. "She made everyone she met want to be a better person."

    Thompson confirmed the remains of pets also were found.

    The Krentels' home was in a remote location, Thompson said. The one-story, 3,000-square-foot frame building with a tin roof was fully engulfed in fire when firefighters arrived on the scene Friday, he said

    The fire is believed to have started about 2:30 p.m., he said. Investigators with the Fire Marshal's Office and the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office were on the scene by 3 p.m.

    At that point, Thompson said, the house was not accessible, with many hot spots remaining. The structure collapsed, and the roof had to be removed before the remains could be recovered. The house was destroyed, as were vehicles in the garage.

    Outside Fire District 12 headquarters Monday, a box had been set up with a hand-lettered sign reading: "Donations/Thank you for your support during this difficult time — Your FD12 Family."

    "We're not used to being on this side of things," Hines said. "We are doing what we do in a difficult situation and are rallying behind our brother."



    http://www.theadvocate.com/new_orlea...12e9fc2ac.html
    Last edited by Force Ten; 07-24-2017 at 10:02 PM.

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    Wife of St. Tammany fire chief killed by bullet, not fire

    The wife of a St. Tammany Parish fire chief whose remains were found in the couple's burned out Lacombe-area home last week died from a gunshot wound, the sheriff's office reported Friday (July 21). The death of Nanette Krentel, wife of St. Tammany Parish Fire District 12 Chief Stephen Krentel, is being investigated by the sheriff's office Major Crime Unit.

    An autopsy revealed that the victim's death was not caused by the fire, but rather by a gunshot wound, according to a sheriff's office news release, which said no further information on the incident will be released at this time.

    "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family during this tragic time," Sheriff Randy Smith said in the news release. "I want to reassure them that we are diligently working on this case and our detectives will continue to work until we have all of the answers."

    The blaze took place at the Krentels' home at 29500 Philip Smith Road off Louisiana 434. Firefighters were called to the house on the afternoon of July 14 and found it consumed by fire. The structure collapsed and the house was destroyed. Firefighters recovered one body, later identified as Nanette Krentel, a former preschool teacher.

    The Krentel homesite is located north of Lacombe, well off Louisiana 434. Entry to the somewhat secluded property is through a security gate opens to a long driveway.

    The Louisiana Fire Marshal's Office is conducting an investigation into the fire. The office did not respond to requests for information Thursday and Friday.

    The St. Tammany Parish Coroner's Office on Tuesday positively identified the remains found in the burned home as Nanette Krentel, 49. DNA testing was used to make the identification. At the time, the cause of death was not reported.

    Contacted Friday afternoon, Fire District 12 spokesman Kris Hines said he was still at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Mandeville, following a funeral and memorial service for Nanette Krentel, who was a former preschool teacher there. He said he had heard about, but not seen, the news release.

    "We're going to stand behind the chief and help him during this difficult time. We'll wait for more from the state and the sheriff's office," Hines said. "The guys in the fire service are going to stick by him and assist him in his time of need."

    Anyone with information about the cased is asked to call Detective Daniel Buckner at 985-898-2338.


    http://www.nola.com/northshore/index...ire_chief.html

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    Shooting death of Tammany fire chief's wife prompts intense probe

    The death of a St. Tammany Parish fire chief's wife whose body was found in the couple's burned out Lacombe-area home earlier this month is the subject of a full-scale investigation by multiple agencies, but authorities remain tight-lipped about the progress of the high-profile probe.

    "What is paramount at this point is to protect the integrity of the investigation," said Brant Thompson, chief deputy for the state Fire Marshal's Office. "There is still much work to be done."

    The state Fire Marshal's Office and the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office Major Crime Unit are leading the investigation into the death of Nanette Krentel, wife of St. Tammany Parish Fire District 12 Chief Stephen Krentel. The victim's remains were found in the couple's fire-ravaged home on July 14.

    An autopsy by the parish coroner's office revealed Nanette Krentel's death was not caused by the fire, but rather by a gunshot wound, according to the sheriff's office. Thompson late Monday (July 24) declined to say whether the fire was started by an arsonist.

    "We have not yet classified this as arson," he said. "It's certainly a suspicious fire."

    Thompson said investigators from the fire marshal's office worked through the weekend on the case but he doesn't know when additional information will be made available to the public.


    http://www.nola.com/northshore/index...many_fire.html

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    Setting fires with electrical timers


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    http://www.fox8live.com/story/359796...-50th-birthday

    NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

    The state fire marshal said investigators are examining video surveillance evidence gathered from the scene of a fire that engulfed the Lacombe-area home of a fire chief and his wife,
    whose body was later recovered and found to have a bullet wound.

    Nanette Watson Krentel died 12 days ago. Friends and family say today would have been her 50th birthday. Nanette's sister and friends spoke out for the first time Wednesday, saying Nanette was the protector of her younger siblings and is especially missed today.

    "Because it's her birthday today, I wanted to celebrate my sister, and we will not stop until we have the truth," said Wendy Watson. "We are still in shock, we are in absolute disbelief."

    The retired teacher was a 1985 graduate of Chappelle, and her death has brought classmates closer together as they post remembrances and updates on Facebook.

    "It's heartbreaking that she's having to celebrate in heaven instead of with us here," said former classmate and close friend Lori Rando.

    "She used to be happy. She had the best laugh ever," said Watson.

    The body of Nanette Krentel, the wife of Covington District 12 Fire Chief Steve Krentel, was found in the charred rubble of her home north of Lacombe. Authorities say she was killed by a gunshot wound and not the fire.

    "Knowing my sister, I knew that she would have had the resources and gumption to get out of that fire, so I knew from the start it was foul play," said Watson.

    "We have gathered video surveillance throughout the community in this case," said Brant Thompson with the state fire marshal. "We are still awaiting lab results on key pieces of evidence."

    "We are eager for them to turn over every stone that they could turn over to find out what happened to her, and who did this to bring this to justice," said Rando.

    "There are forensic tests that will take some time to resolve," said James Hartman, a spokesman for the St. Tammany coroner's office.

    "I have faith in the sheriff's office. we have been in constant contact as a family," said Watson.

    Nanette's friends are pleased the case is now getting national attention.

    "It is getting agencies that may not have been originally involved in the case may now be bringing in experts that possibly Louisiana doesn't have, so it doesn't become a cold case kind of thing," said Rando.

    Arson investigators said this case is especially difficult because the fire had been burning for nearly an hour before anyone discovered it. They said those circumstances make evidence gathering difficult, but investigators said they are finding crucial clues, which are now being checked out.

  8. #8
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    Any update on this?


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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ri0301 View Post
    Any update on this?


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    Nothing yet. Really want to see the arson report.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Force Ten View Post
    Nothing yet. Really want to see the arson report.


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    I would like to know what is taking so long. The press has been awfully quiet.


  11. #11
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    Another somewhat similar unsolved death, Renita Menzies, from Lacombe, 2010.

    http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho....php?p=5701836

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  12. #12
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    Both from Lacombe...I wonder if they have a serial arsonist in the parish?

    http://www.theadvocate.com/new_orlea...cb83b84e2.html

    Fire at small Mandeville Baptist church classified as arson

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Force Ten View Post
    Nothing yet. Really want to see the arson report.


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    As do I.
    When you see a cloud with no silver lining, paint your own.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by talula View Post
    Both from Lacombe...I wonder if they have a serial arsonist in the parish?

    http://www.theadvocate.com/new_orlea...cb83b84e2.html

    Fire at small Mandeville Baptist church classified as arson
    Wholly smokes, what is it with this parish and it's fires?

  15. #15
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    Interesting, especially considering how St. Tammany, the parish namesake, died.

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