– A Shepparton man, who died in a fire in his neighbour’s house, was staying there because he had burnt down his two homes by smoking in bed.
Gary Taylor, 52, was found by firefighters within 1 metre of an exit of the Sibley Court home, which caught fire about 1am yesterday.
CFA operations officer Shane Sutton said it was a “gut-wrenching” discovery.
Mr Taylor was believed to have escaped the blaze before returning to save his neighbour’s dog.
The neighbour, believed to be a middle-aged mother of two, took in the long-time Shepparton resident last week after his home next door was destroyed by fire.
A bungalow on the same block was also destroyed in February. Detective Acting Sergeant Shane Kervin said both fires were caused by the man smoking in bed.
He said yesterday’s fire was not considered suspicious. “We don’t want to jump to any conclusions but (smoking) will form part of the investigation,” Sergeant Kervin said.
Mr Sutton described the neighbour as a Good Samaritan and said she escaped unharmed by climbing through a bedroom window.
Her dog, which Mr Taylor had tried to rescue, was found safely by firefighters, but other animals had to be euthanised after the blaze which destroyed the house.
One of Mr Taylor’s friends told the “Herald Sun” he was known for his love of birds, including a parrot that survived and remained in its cage yesterday.
Neighbour George Choury, 92, said he could not believe the drama in his quiet court. He said Mr Taylor had been caring for his mother before she recently moved to a nursing home.
Other residents said the woman was “heartbroken”, although fortunately her two children were not home at the time of the fire – Tom Minear

About Jumpin' Jack Cash

Deep connections are the most important aspect of my existence. I don’t care if people don’t know what they want. I love books. I’m cynical of love stories, although I’m romantic. I adore gardens. I like women who challenge me. I love the rain as an excuse to stay inside and dream. I'm furiously impatient. If I ask you a question best to tell me the truth as I'm likely to already know the answer. I'm a carnivore. I continuously underestimate the magic of fresh flowers in my home. I love warm rain in the summer. My mood elevates to epic proportions when the sun shines. Tell me not to do something and I'll do it twice and take photos. Running is my antidepressant. I loathe lies. I rarely forgive a lie. Loyalty and honesty are my most noble virtues, and I value them more than anything in other people. I love to love, and am able to fall in love very quickly, although it's only ever happened once. I understood myself and fixed myself only after destroying myself. My greatest excitement comes from deliberately getting lost in foreign cities. I can be extremely loud and frighteningly silent. I hate insinuations. I love storms. Justice for all. I'm a proud man, but welcome the influence of the feminine soul. I have two sisters. I’m a dreamer. I’m a deep thinker. Don’t deal with guilt trips or drama that well. I'm extremely stubborn and persistent. I'm brilliant at keeping secrets. I love driving. I become absolutely and completely lost while watching a burning fire. When the toast pops from the toaster I’m never ready and shit myself. I play the guitar, but require much improvement. Solitude and warmth of the sun are perfect together. I’ve been married once and now divorced. I’m a music junkie. Chocolate mousse is the shit. I curse too much. I find it difficult to make friends. I spent four years as a firefighter. I’ve run my own company since 1991. Bright lights, big cities. I’ve been an executive producer of a feature film. Some people don’t care, and that’s the biggest let-down of the human race. There are cures and solutions for many evils, but no remedy for the worst of them all - the apathy of human beings. The sound of the Italian language being spoken is as good as my favourite music. I hate corrupt cops. I relentlessly and passionately pursue anybody and anything that sets my soul on fire. I'm a dog lover, and all my dogs are considered family members. I have an obsession with photography. I have some close friends who are household names, but shall always remain anonymous. I’m crazy but not lazy. Losing a soulmate has hurt me badly. My two young sons are the nucleus of my universe. I love airports. I love freedom. If you are dishonest or disloyal, I can erase you from my life and memory immediately and permanently. I yearn to explore, dream about and discover as many friendships, deep connections and places, one possibly can in a lifetime.
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