A young student nurse was killed in a house fire which left her boyfriend and mum in hospital.
Natalie Merry, 18, died in the blaze which ripped through the two-storey house in Ayr, Ayrshire on Sunday night.
Her boyfriend Alistair Innes 22, and her mother Jennifer Merry, 49, managed to escape the inferno, the Daily Record reports.
Popular Natalie was a student at University of the West of Scotland, where she was studying a degree in adult nursing.
She had recently posted on social media about being excited to find out where her placements were.
Heartbroken friends took to social media to pay tribute to her yesterday.
On Twitter, megp22 wrote: “A beautiful soul is never forgotten.”
Lauzaneilson added: “Just goes to show that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Don’t take having your friends for granted.
“Spend time with the people you love. You never know when the last goodbye will be.
“At a loss for words, such a beautiful person inside and out.”
Police and fire service investigators remained at the scene of the blaze yesterday.
Officers in white suits could be seen at the front windows sifting through the charred contents of the house looking for clues to what may have caused the blaze.
Many neighbours were too distressed to speak about the tragedy.
But a woman who lives in flats behind the house said: “It’s heartbreaking.
“I know the girl’s mum. She is a really nice woman. I often see her when she is out getting her shopping and she always says hello.
"We heard the fire engines last night but didn’t realise what had happened until today.
“They seem like a lovely family and this is just so sad. It’s horrendous for this to happen to anyone but especially someone so young.”
Other residents told of their shock at the teenager’s death.
A man who lives opposite the scene said: “We didn’t even realise anything was wrong until a couple of hours later because we were in the back of our house.
"Then I came into the room and saw the blue lights.
“By that time, the fire was out but there was still some amount of smoke.
“I don’t know the girl but I think she works as a nurse. My heart goes out to the family.”
James Scott, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service ’s local senior officer, said crews
rushed to the scene after being alerted at 8.22pm on Sunday.
He added: “Sadly, one woman passed away at the scene. Our thoughts are with all of those who are affected at this time.”
Police confirmed the death of an 18-year-old woman.
A spokeswoman added: “A 22-year-old man and a 49-year-old woman were taken to Ayr Hospital for treatment.
“The fire was extinguished by the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and a joint investigation has been launched to establish the circumstances.”
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