House Fire Claims Life of Man in Oakdale Community

December 17, 2019 - A Shelby County man lost his life in a structure fire in the Oakdale Community, as reported by authorities.

According to the Shelby County Sheriff's Department, at 9:45am Sunday, December 15, 2019, the Sheriff's Department was notified of a structure fire with a possible fatality involved. 

Deputy Jake Gross was dispatched to the location of the home on County Road 2625 in the Oakdale Community and when he arrived a fatality was confirmed. Family members identified the individual as being Bobby Joe Cartwright.

Lt. Investigator Del Birdwell performed the fire investigation and assisted with the death investigation. He concluded the fire was accidental and most likely began in the front part of house due to a wood heater located there. Cartwright was located midway between the heat source at one end of the building and the exit to the home at the other end of the structure where he succumbed to his injuries.

The fire is believed to have occurred sometime after 12-midnight Friday, December 13, 2019. The house was situated behind other structures, secluded from immediate view. A family member who was going hunting discovered what remained of the building and contacted the Sheriff's Department.

The inquest was performed by Marla Denby, Precinct 2 Justice of the Peace, Forensic Medical in Tyler, Texas where an autopsy will be performed.