By: Heather Abraham

ALIQUIPPA (KDKA) — A Beaver County woman is dead after fire broke out early this morning at an apartment building in Aliquippa.

The blaze started before 6 a.m. at the Towne Tower apartments on Franklin Avenue.

It was a quick response by the fire department to put out the small fire; but when they got inside a fourth floor apartment, crews found 56-year-old Loretta Rodgers unresponsive.

“They knocked the fire down pretty quickly and when they did their search, they found a woman who had… deceased, passed away in front of one of the windows,” said Chief David Foringer, of the Aliquippa Fire Department.

“I’m an employee of the local funeral home as well, and the funeral director called me and let me know there was a fire in Aliquippa and my sister had been in the fire,” said Alvin Rodgers, the victim’s brother.

Rodgers came as soon as he learned his sister had died. Loretta leaves behind five siblings, several kids of her own and a grandchild.

“I’ve never experienced anything like this,” said Rodgers. “So, if the community could pray for our family, we would really appreciate it.”

The Aliquippa Fire Chief said the fire started in the kitchen. When crews arrived, the stove top was still on and it appeared as if Rodgers had been cooking.

While the fire was contained to just the kitchen, about 20 residents in the apartment building were temporarily evacuated.

“First through third floor were able to shelter in place. Fourth through fifth were evacuated,” said Chief Foringer. “There’s a church on the first floor and they were able to shelter there.”

All the residents have since been allowed back inside.

Stay with KDKA for the latest details.

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