Explosion victims believed to be Greenwood teacher, husband - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Explosion victims believed to be Greenwood teacher, husband

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Jennifer and Dion Longworth Jennifer and Dion Longworth
INDIANAPOLIS -

Indianapolis Metro Police have not made official identification of the two people killed in Saturday night's explosion on the south side, but they are believed to be Jennifer and Dion Longworth.

Jennifer was a second grade teacher at Southwest Elementary School in Greenwood. Classes will be delayed by two hours Monday morning at all Greenwood schools, and a candlelight vigil was held at Southwest Elementary Sunday night.

Friends, family and colleagues gathered to remember Jennifer Longworth at the vigil Sunday evening. Her young students wrote messages on a poster, saying, "We love you, Mrs. Longworth," and thanking her for being their teacher.

Meantime, investigators are trying to determine the cause of the explosion.

Neighbors reported a wall of flames after the deafening blast just after 11:00 pm.

Michelle Crick heard a huge crash as glass and other debris shattered and dispersed.

Her husband Brandon rescued a young girl in the aftermath.

"He looked in a couple of houses and he saw the girl. She was bloody in her kitchen. She was crying and he just went in there and he grabbed her. She just kept saying my mom and my sister are in there," said Crick.

The impact sent seven people to the hospital. Close to 70 firefighters responded, some within minutes of the explosion. A fire station is just a few blocks away.

Emergency crews formed search teams to locate every resident and get medical attention to the injured.

Indianapolis Fire Department Chief Kenny Bacon said two doctors and several medics checked out residents at Mary Bryan Elementary School, where they were evacuated. They were then transported to Southport Presbyterian Church where family or friends picked them up.

In all, five homes were destroyed and 80 were damaged, some of them seriously. Views from Chopper 13 show nothing but rubble where two homes once stood.

Citizens Gas has been at the scene since the incident, but police have warned not to assume that the cause was natural gas. That still hasn't been confirmed, although it's suspected.

"Be careful not to say it's a gas explosion because we don't know that right now. There's a lot of speculation out there," said Officer Kendale Adams.

Investigators will have to pinpoint what exploded, causing so much damage and claiming two lives.

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