Weather Forecast


Victims' names released from Monday's fire

NISSWA — Names of the victims who were killed Monday morning inside a residence after firefighters responded to a call of a structure fire in Lake Edward Township near Nisswa were released Tuesday.

The Crow Wing County Sheriff office identified the victims as Kenneth Alan Ponsness, 56, and Kathleen Marie Ponsness, 57.

Crow Wing County Sheriff Todd Dahl said authorities are continuing to investigate the circumstances regarding the fire and the cause of the death of the two individuals.

The Nisswa Fire Department were called to the scene about 10:36 a.m. Monday at a home at 1562 Tranquil Road, off Crow Wing County Road 4, just north of Crow Wing County Road 3 in Merrifield. The one-story house, with a basement and the unattached garage were fairly engulfed upon arrival.

Assisting Nisswa firefighters at the scene were Mission Township, Ideal Township, Pequot Lakes, Crosslake and Brainerd fire departments and North Memorial Ambulance.

The bodies were transported to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office for autopsies to determine the cause of death.

JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at or 855-5851. Follow me on Twitter at