8-foot alligator, among other reptiles killed in Lake Stevens house fire

LAKE STEVENS — A Lake Stevens house fire has killed an eight-foot alligator along with other reptiles.

Early Friday morning Colleen and Ben Tomsheck ran outside to see their home already up in flames.

Ben immediately ran back into the building and saved the couple’s cat and two dogs, but got hurt, forcing him to abandon the remaining reptiles left in the inferno.

Among the reptiles that perished was an 8-foot alligator.

Both Colleen and Ben are very active in their community. As a retired herpetologist Ben was very passionate about sharing tips regarding his beloved animals with his neighbors. Along with the various animals and reptiles that he had, Ben also kept a large alligator.

When the first responders arrived around 2:30 a.m. the fire department was able to extinguish the flames but the house was deemed a complete loss and everything inside was destroyed.

“They have no keys to their vehicles or wallets, everything is gone,” said Colleen’s niece Kate Moore.

The cause of the fire is unclear and currently being investigated.

A GoFundMe has been created to help the Tomshecks during this time. You can donate here.