Seven college students perished in an Ocean Beach, NC, house fire this morning, six of them from the University of Southern Carolina, one from Clemson University. There were 13 college students in the house when the fire broke out. Six were hospitalized, including one who jumped from the house, which was raised on stilts, into a waterway, according to Debbie Smith, the mayor of Ocean Isle Beach.
The blaze, which started around 7am, left the waterfront home almost completely incinerated, the Myrtle Beach Sun News reports. Smith said the fire's cause was still unknown. A newspaper deliveryman saw smoke rising from the building while on his route, and called 911. The private home was being used by the owner's daughter and a group of her friends, Smith said. Several dozen college students were staying at a few homes on the block, two blocks from the beach.