PTHS alum dies in fire in Seattle


A Port Townsend High School alum died in an apartment fire in Seattle March 18, and will be honored with a memorial service at Fort Worden next month.

Emerson “Emmett” Davis, aged 23, was a student of PTHS and Peninsula College before he was found dead in the 34-unit Catholic Housing Services building at the intersection of 14th Avenue and East Yesler Way.

According to Seattle Fire Department Public Information Officer Kristin Tinsley, firefighters responded just after 12:25 a.m. on March 18 for a report of a fire in the four-story apartment building, with Engine 6 from the Central District arriving first on scene to find heavy smoke and flames coming from a window on the second floor.

“During the search of the building, crews found a victim in the primary fire unit on the second floor,” Tinsley said. “Unfortunately, their injuries were fatal.”

The Medical Examiner and the Seattle Police Department responded to the scene to begin their investigations, but Tinsley reported that fire investigators have ruled the cause of the fire as undetermined, pending autopsy results.

The fire started in a studio apartment and extended into the unit above via the exterior window, with the total estimated loss running $295,000.

Back in Port Townsend, a memorial service and potluck celebration of life for Davis has been scheduled for noon April 28 at the Fort Worden Beach Shelter at 100 Harbor Defense Way, one day after Davis’ birthday.

Nicole Bae, who announced the Port Townsend service on her Facebook page, added that a Seattle memorial service has also been scheduled for 4:30 p.m. at March 29 at Monica’s Village Place Community Room at 140 S. 23rd Ave.

“Please spread the word,” Bae wrote on Facebook. “It would be wonderful to see as many people there and share the love that we all had for Emerson.”

Sara Craig started a GoFundMe page to help Davis’ family cover the expenses associated with his death, which had raised $9,950 (with a $5,000 goal) from 133 people by March 25.

“To whom have met him, know him and loved him, it’s a devastating loss in the world,” Craig wrote. “Our angel left too soon! His passion for life, friendships and living through experiences was contagious.”

Craig went on to extol Davis’ “laugh and smile,” saying to those who knew him, “You know what it brought to a room of friends and family.”


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