Woman in aerosol fire was making wreath as tribute

Fire victim Roseanne Armstrong
Fire victim Roseanne Armstrong
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A MOTHER who died after an aerosol exploded while she was making a Christmas wreath, had been preparing the decoration in memory of her late teenage daughter.

Roseanne Rowan Armstrong, 43, had been preparing the touching festive memorial at the home she shared with her elderly parents, while smoking a cigarette.

An aerosol exploded and a blaze tore through the ground-floor flat in Old Craighall.

Roseanne was making a wreath to lay on her daughter’s grave when the explosion happened.

Mary-K Armstrong, 17, died after taking a rogue Valium tablet in October 2014.

Edward Armstrong, 23, Roseanne’s eldest son, said: “We’ve been handed some cards in life. It’s a nightmare.

“My mum was making a wreath to lay on the grave of my deceased sister Mary-K. It included a sign saying ‘daughter’.

“My mum was using the paints to put silver and gold sparkles on it. She lit a cigarette while the window was shut. That caused the explosion.”

It has transpired that despite being on fire, brave Roseanne rescued her parents and the family cat from the inferno.

“She jumped through the window and went back in to save my grandparents,” said Edward. “The house was ablaze and she was walking through complete flames.

“Rescuing them killed my mother.”

Roseanne was previously hospitalised with burns after her car blew up outside the Tesco supermarket in Wishaw, North Lanarkshire, in 2011.

At the time she was standing close to the car, which she had just purchased 24 hours earlier and filled with petrol, when it ignited.

Edward added: “The last time she was a walking miracle, this time she is a hero.

“I just want everybody to know that my mother donated her life to save my grandmother and grandfather.

“Her husband, Edward Armstrong Snr, is distraught. We love her and will always remember her. She was the foundation of the family.”

The drama unfolded after a fire broke out at the home in Old Craighall, Musselburgh, Midlothian, in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Emergency services rushed to the scene, where they found Roseanne with serious injuries before she was transferred to St Johns Hospital in Livingston.

Roseanne, who has eight children and six grandchildren, died from her injuries in hospital.

Her parents, Bobby Rowan, 77, and Margaret-Rose Rowan, 76, suffered minor injuries and were taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.

A joint investigation between the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and Police Scotland is under way to establish the cause of the blaze.

Edward added: “We are all very shocked. There is not a woman in the world that can replace my mum. If she could do something herself she would or she would die trying. And she did.

“My grandparents are living thanks to mum’s efforts.”

Roseanne had moved in with her parents, who have lived at the Old Craighall flat for 20 years, to help look after them.

Edward was told the circumstances in which his mother suffered horrific injuries after speaking to neighbours and the emergency services.

Roseanne is thought to have jumped out of the window while on fire.

newsen@edinburghnews.com