Man killed in Harvey fire

December 23, 2008 6:06:59 AM PST
Fire has killed a man in south suburban Harvey overnight. But the quick action of neighbors may have helped save members of his family.

The fire was in an apartment building on Lexington. Firefighters say they found 60-year-old Raymond Lee dead in his apartment. Lee reportedly used a wheelchair.

Neighbors knocked on doors and helped get everyone else out of the building. That included a pregnant woman who says she was asleep inside with her three kids.

"If it wasn't for my neighbor knocking on my door, we would have burned up in the complex also, because the way the smoke inhalation was, it was real terrible. I'm grateful for my neighbor knocking on my door telling us to leave," said Tameka Aleman, who escaped fire.

Investigators say the fire appears to have started in the victim's kitchen. It's unclear what may have sparked it. There were no working smoke detectors.

The fire started about midnight, according to a Harvey Fire Department dispatcher. The victim was pronounced dead about 45 minutes later, said the Cook Co. Medical Examiner's Office.

The STNG Wire contributed to this report.


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