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Tributes to Burnley house fire death victim
THE FAMILY of a Burnley man killed in a fire at his home have paid tribute to a ‘kind-hearted, loving man’.
Jimmy Thompson, 57, died after, it is believed, a discarded cigarette started a fire at his ground floor flat in Kay Gardens.
His sister, Annetta, 55, and brother Alan, 67, said they were still in shock at his death.
Mr Thompson, a former dye caster at Lupton and Place in Athletic Street, is believed to have fallen out of his wheelchair in his bedroom at around 1am on Thursday.
Annetta, of Dall Street, Burnley Wood, said: “It hasn’t hit me yet that he’s gone. God help people when it does sink in.
“We’re quite a large but close-knit family so it’s been a hard couple of days. The phone hasn’t stopped ringing and we’ve got so much to do.
“He was a kind-hearted, loving man, a little nuisance sometimes, but he was a good-natured lad.
“I spoke to him on Sunday and he was in the Princess Royal pub [in Yorkshire Street] with his pals, happy as anything.”
She said Mr Thompson, formerly of Burdett Street and Gill Street, had been in a wheelchair for five years after suffering two heart attacks and a stroke which left him paralysed down one side.
He also suffered from sciatica and pancreatitis, which forced him to retire 10 years ago.
Brother Alan said: “We grew up in the Accrington Road area and Jimmy was a well-known darts player for the Wood Top Inn.
“Since he moved to Kay Gardens he kept himself to himself and only really went out to the pub.
“He loved his dog, Vic. They were great companions and he loved animals.
“From talking to the police, we think he’s tried to go to the toilet in the middle of the night, fell out of his wheelchair, hit his head and dropped his fag.
“The post-mortem isn’t until Monday so we’ll find out more then.”
As well as Annetta and Alan, Mr Thompson, who never married, is survived by sisters Sherelyn, Hazel and Ruby, brothers Billy and Peter, a son, James and one grandchild.
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