An elderly couple died when a fire swept through their house in Elliotsville Township early Saturday, the State Fire Marshal’s Office said.

The bodies of the man and woman, who were both in their late 70s, were found in the rubble of their one-story home on Elliotsville Road, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

McCausland said the victims’ names weren’t being released until relatives can be notified.

He said the fire was reported by a neighbor shortly after 1 a.m. When firefighters arrived, the house was engulfed in flames, he said.

The bodies were found in or near the living room and authorities speculate the couple were trying to escape the fire when they died.

The cause of the fire can’t be determined because of the extent of damage, McCausland said, but fire investigators say it appeared to have started in the dining room where a wood stove was located.

McCausland said the house was a former seasonal camp that had been converted to year-round use and that only a couple of walls were left standing.

Elliotsville Township is in Piscataquis County near Greenville.

Edward D. Murphy can be contacted at 791-6465 or at:

emurphy@pressherald.com