A college campus, and surrounding community, is remembering two lifelong friends who died in the apartment they shared. Twenty-one-year-old Lacy Siddal and 19-year-old Lauren Peterson were both Bethalto natives, and both students at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. Their off-campus apartment caught fire Sunday, and the two died yesterday from injuries they sustained in the blaze.
The fire broke out sometime in the 3:00am hour on Sunday, and was called in to Edwardsville firefighters by a neighbor around 3:45am. The young women were found unconscious in an area between their bedrooms when they were rescued and taken to Anderson Hospital and eventually flown to St. Louis. Both were suffering from burns and smoke inhalation. The preliminary cause of the fire appears to be accidental. Siddal was a 2009 graduate of Civic Memorial High School, while Peterson graduated in 2010, and a moment of silence was held at the school yesterday in their honor. SIUE officials say they are planning a memorial service at a later date for the students. Funeral arrangements are pending.