BELLINGHAM, Wash. (AP) — The Whatcom County medical examiner says two bodies recovered in sunken debris after a fire burned boats and a boathouse at a Bellingham marina are those of a couple missing after the blaze.
Dr. Gary Goldfogel said Friday that 33-year-old Sterling Taylor and 43-year-old James Langei were identified by dental exams. He says both died of smoke inhalation during the fire. Their bodies were recovered Thursday.
The couple lived aboard a 42-foot boat that burned and sank in the March 30 fire at the Squalicum Harbor.
They owned the America’s Cup coffee shop near the marina. Police said a 911 call from the boat indicated the two were trapped. Their boat was one of as many as 10 boats destroyed.
Bellingham police spokesman Mark Young says the cause and origin of the fire may take weeks to determine.
The fire was difficult to fight because of its size, and crews didn’t have a fire boat, Fire Department Assistant Chief Roger Christensen said at the time. The city decommissioned an old fire boat last year and didn’t have the money to replace it.