House Explosion Claims Lives of Two in Mille Lacs County

PRINCETON, MINNESOTA – Tragedy struck Mille Lacs County in the early hours of Tuesday morning, as an explosion ripped through a home, claiming the lives of two individuals and a pet dog. The victims were identified as Royce Edward Kreger Jr., aged 60, and Katherine Ann Kreger, aged 61, both residents of the property.

The devastating incident occurred on 52nd Street, near the Rum River, sending shockwaves through the community located about three miles north of Princeton. First responders arrived at the scene to find a large debris field engulfed in flames, indicative of a powerful explosion. Despite the intense blaze, firefighters from multiple local departments successfully extinguished the fire, allowing for a search of the wreckage.

Mille Lacs County Chief Deputy Aaron Evenson described the blast as being felt over a considerable distance, marking it as the most significant he has witnessed in over two decades of law enforcement experience. Images captured at the site showcased insulation and fragments scattered across the vicinity and hanging from nearby trees, painting a grim picture of the destruction left in the explosion’s wake.

Authorities have yet to determine the cause of the explosion, prompting an ongoing investigation involving the State Fire Marshal’s Office and local law enforcement. The community remains in mourning as they grapple with the tragic loss of life in this devastating event.

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