Pastor seriously injured in fire near church in Mount Holly

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Dr. Clayton Burch (left) was seriously injured in a house fire early Tuesday morning, officials said. The pastor of Goshen Free Will Baptist Church was taken to the hospital with life-threatnening injuries. (Credit: Goshen Free Will Baptist Church)

A local pastor was seriously hurt in a house fire near a church Tuesday morning in Mount Holly, officials said.

The fire started about 3 a.m. at 1300 W. Catawba Avenue near Goshen Free Will Baptist Church.

Firefighters on scene tell FOX 46 that the pastor of the church, Dr. Clayton Burch, was taken to the Caromont Regional Medical Center with life-threatening injuries. His wife was also in the ambulance with him. It's unclear what, if any her injuries are.

A passerby saw the fire and rang the doorbell to alert those inside, according to Jesse Watts, fire marshal for Gaston County.

Five different fire departments responded to the scene. More than 50 percent of the home was damaged in the blaze. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.