UPDATED: Body identified from Gleason fire earlier this week
By Craig Marx, Editor
A structure fire engulfed numerous buildings at a Gleason farmstead last Monday night and was still smoldering the next afternoon. As reported by the Langlade County Sheriff’s Office, a body was also recovered from inside the now-destroyed home.
The body was identified after an autopsy conducted by Langlade County Coroner Larry Shadick. The man’s name was released on Wednesday as Robert Bathke, whose father, Daniel, had passed away less than one week prior. R. Bathke reportedly died from a self-inflicted wound after setting fire to his parent’s barn and home.
State fire marshals were on the scene early Tuesday afternoon investigating the burnt ruins of the barn and house, located in northwestern Langlade County on Hwy. H. Town of Russell fire personnel, located in adjacent Lincoln County, were the first ones to report to the blaze followed by Langlade County sheriffs.
As the family grieves the loss of two family members in such a short period of time, the family and friends of Sandra Bathke, Robert’s mother and Daniel’s wife, have recently set up an account at CoVantage Credit Union and are receiving donations. To make a donation care of “The Account for Sandra Bathke,” the address is P.O. Box 107, Antigo, WI, 54409 and for more information please call (715) 627-4336.