MANCELONA -- Employees at Shanty Creek Resorts are collecting money to help a co-worker whose home exploded.

The fund will benefit Darryl Fitzpatrick, a maintenance worker at the resort, and his wife, Angela, who were renting a mobile home in Mancelona Township when the blast occurred last weekend.

"He's got a lot of supporters here," Shanty Creek spokesman Jon Stultz said. "We're hoping very shortly he'll be returning back to work.

"He's doing very well."

The Fitzpatricks were at home on Wayside Lane when the explosion happened about 6:30 a.m. Dec. 22.

State fire investigators this week concluded that the accidental blast was caused when ice fell from the roof and struck a line that regulates the home's gas supply, Mancelona fire Chief Ed Sayre said.

Gas filled the crawl space underneath the home and ignited when Darryl Fitzpatrick lit the furnace, Sayre said.

He said the couple did not have renter's insurance.

Antrim County sheriff's deputies have said both were treated for burns.

Angela Fitzpatrick remained in fair condition Friday at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City. Her husband was released Monday from the Spectrum Health Blodgett Regional Burn Center in Grand Rapids.

The American Red Cross has attempted to contact the couple, but so far administrators said they have been unsuccessful.

The couple initially was reached Dec. 22, but no further contact has been made, said Kevin Bavers, director of disaster services with the Red Cross' northern Lower Michigan chapter.

"Typically in a situation like this, we can provide for their immediate housing need," Bavers said. "At this point, they've been staying somewhere for a week now, so they're probably beyond that necessity."

Bavers said the organization still can assist with groceries and clothing.

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