On 8-24-19 at 10:06pm the Vernon Co Sheriff’s Dept received a 911 call reporting a fire at 18478 Co Hwy U in Sylvan Township. When authorities arrived, they discovered a 2 story home completely engulfed in flames. Early reports indicated that a person may still be inside the structure. Richland Center Fire responded & requested mutual aid from the Viola Fire Dept, and Lone Rock Fire Dept. Viola EMS also responded. When Sheriffs Deputies & RC Fire arrived they conducted a size up of the scene, and while doing so located an adult female laying behind the residence. It was determined an explosion had occurred. Viola EMS checked the female for signs of life and found none. She was pronounced dead at the scene by a Deputy Richland Co Coroner. She was identified as 63 year old Bonnie L. Strothman. Her husband, 68 year old Allen D. Strothman, was transported by Viola EMS to Vernon Memorial Hospital in Viroqua with non life threatening injuries. An autopsy was ordered by the Coroner’s Office.
Fire crews were on the scene for approximately 5 hours. The incident remains under investigation.