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1 dead, dozens displaced in Bensenville apartment fire

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A fire broke out early Nov. 19, 2017 in an apartment building in Bensenville, killing one person and more than 30 people. (WLS)

One person was killed and dozens were displaced early Sunday in an apartment fire in west suburban Bensenville.

The fire broke out at about 6:15 a.m. in the 300-block of Marshall Road in the apartment's third floor. A man living in a third-floor apartment, where the fire started, died.

All of the 18-unit building's residents, about 35 people, were displaced.

One of them is Ted Gehman, who lived in the building with his girlfriend and dog.

"I woke up to firefighters banging on our door," he said. "... We grabbed our pups and ran out with jeans in one hand and a dog in the other.

Gehman and his girlfriend were the last to evacuate, sleeping for nearly an hour before firefighters woke them up.


Gena Lovergine, who lived on the top floor with her fiance and daughter, lost everything, except for her engagement ring which was recovered by one of the firefighters.

"It was given to me, the diamond was given to me by my mom," Lovergine said. "My dad gave it to her. My dad passed away when I was 8. This is all I have left of him. Everything else I had that was in there that was his is gone."

While the material losses are painful, Lovergine said it is not what matters.

"All three of us are safe. We all have our lives. That is the one thing that can't be replaced. All of that is money," she said.

Related Topics:
building fireBensenville
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