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Man’s death ruled a suicide

Post-Bulletin, Rochester MN

The death of a 26-year-old Rochester man whose body was found in a building destroyed by fire last weekend has been ruled a suicide by the Olmsted County deputy coroner.

Paul Michael Beaulieu died about one hour before the house exploded and burned Saturday, said Monica Cole, deputy coroner. The fire and explosion at 822 Sixth St. S.E. was reported at 4:30 a.m. The house was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived. Beaulieu was the only one home at the time.

Cole said the cause of death "appears to be a hanging." She declined to say more.

Fire officials continue their investigation to determine the cause of the explosion and fire. Vance Swisher, Rochester fire marshal, previously said a gas leak was one of several possible causes.

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A memorial service for Beaulieu will be at 2 p.m. Thursday at Ranfranz & Vine Funeral Homes in Rochester.

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