Wilmington, NC – Ocean Isle Beach town officials have released the identities of the seven college students who died in a vacation home fire Sunday.
The victims were all between 17 and 19 years old. They are Cassidy Fae Pendley, Lauren Astrid Kristiana Mahon, Justin Michael Anderson, Travis Lane Cale, Emily Lauren Yelton, Allison Walden and William Rhea. Yelton was a student at Clemson, all the rest attended the University of South Carolina.
Thirteen students spent the weekend at the house, mostly members of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity and Delta Delta Delta sorority who had gathered for a Greek weekend with counterparts from North Carolina.
Some of the victims had attended high school together in Greenville, South Carolina.
Investigators reportedly believe the fire started on a back deck before racing through the three-story beach house early Sunday morning. Brunswick County Emergency Services Manager Randy Thompson says the State Bureau of Investigations may release its preliminary findings on the cause of the fire later this week.