Elderly Man Dies in Fire, Neighbors Forced to Move Out

Published 12/11 2013 05:54PM

Updated 12/11 2013 06:37PM

An elderly man in Snyder died from an apartment fire early Tuesday morning.

Firefighters responded to the call around 4:15 a.m. and battled the fire from the first floor unit of La Posada Apartments. William Caswell, 74, died as the result.

Neighbors describe Caswell as a father-figure and made everyone feel welcome.

"He was like a grandfather" neighbor William Hinson said. "He would always sit out in the stairs and you can simply have a conversation with him."

The fire caused major damages to neighboring units, as well as water damage to several apartments. Residents were forced to move out and find other places to stay. Some neighbors say they are currently occupying vacant apartments in the complex, but not everyone is in the same situation.

"I'm going to have to stay at my friends and hopefully find a home soon," neighbor Zachary Interrante said.

Interrante along with his friend Hinson say the apartment complex didn't have anymore space for them to stay in. They say the owner only gave them their deposit back. His apartment which was next to Caswell's only sustained minor waiter and smoke damages.

"I remember hearing a loud bang waking me up," Interrante said. "I saw smoke and when I touched the wall, I felt the heat."

Interrante also feels that Caswell was the best neighbor you can have.

"He did anything he could and went out of this way to make people happy," Interrante adds.

American Red Cross assisted some of the residents by providing a motel to stay in for a few days. As of Wednesday, the investigation is ongoing but Snyder chief of police said that they're not suspicious of foul play. The state fire marshal's office is investigating what caused the fire.

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