Neighbors remember elderly woman who died in Huntsville apartment fire

She has not been identified yet, but neighbors say she was the 'community watch' for the neighborhood.

Posted: Oct 29, 2019 6:49 PM
Updated: Oct 29, 2019 6:50 PM

We're still waiting to learn the name of an elderly woman who died in an apartment fire.

That fire broke out around 7 a.m. Tuesday at the Ascent Apartments in Jones Valley. Investigators say it started in the kitchen, and the woman's robe caught fire.

Neighbors WAAY 31 spoke with said the elderly woman who died was like their community watch.

"She'd just be sitting there. I'd get home from work, and I'd get home and walk my little dog, and she'd just be sitting there. She'd always wave. She was always really friendly," said Nathan Liberto.

Liberto says he's devastated to learn the woman who liked to keep watch over the neighborhood died in a fire.

"I....Indescribable is probably the best way to put it. Anybody who loses their life, I mean, it's just devastating," said LIberto.

Liberto said he knew something was wrong when he saw smoke coming from the apartment Tuesday morning.

"I saw smoke come out of the top and that's when I kind of realized what was going on and that it was a fire," he said.

Another neighbor called 911, and he didn't want to go on camera, but said he saw smoke pouring from the windows of the woman's apartment. He immediately knocked on his other neighbor's door, and then tried to kick in the door to the burning apartment.

He said there was a lot of smoke and fire at the entrance. Huntsville Fire and Rescue saved a cat from the home. We don't know if a dog survived.

"It just really puts life into perspective and thinking no matter how old you are, young, middle ages, old...Life is so precious," said Liberto.

Huntsville Fire and Rescue hasn't said how the fire started, just that it started in the kitchen. We know the victim lived there with a relative, who was out of town. Investigators say the family has been notified.

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