CHICAGO (CBS) — An 88-year-old man was killed and a woman was injured in a fire early Wednesday morning in the Dunning neighborhood.
The fire started around 3:45 a.m. at a five-story apartment building in the 6400 block of West Belle Plaine Avenue.
A man and a woman were taken to Community First Medical Center in critical condition. The man, 88-year-old Radzislaw Sadzak, later died, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.
A Fire Department spokesperson said the woman was stable when she went to the hospital, and told firefighters she heard the smoke detectors go off in the condo building hallway.
Fire Department officials said the fire was contained to the victims’ fifth-floor unit. There were no working smoke detectors in the victims’ condo.
A man who lives across the hall from the victims said when the alarms went off in his unit, he opened the door, and the hallway was filled with smoke. So he grabbed his son to get out.
“I immediately closed the door, and I yelled at him, ‘We gotta get out of here.’ So he came with me. I opened the door again. I could see unit across the way’s door open. There was a glow in there, and me and him turned around. Fortunately, it’s not that far out to the exit way, and we got into the stairwell,” Russell Burzych said.
Burzych moved into the Ridgemoor Estates Condo building at least 20 years ago. He said he would see his neighbors in passing, and can’t believe the man is gone.
“That’s what’s bothering me. It’s tough. You start thinking about yourself. It could have been me. You just feel bad. I wished I could have helped him,” he said. “It was just a lot of smoke, and you just want to get out of there, and you don’t know where the fire is coming from. So I feel terrible for them, and I’m just glad we were able to get out, and thankfully nobody else got hurt.”
Dozens of people who live in the condo building had to evacuate.
The cause of the fire was under investigation.