Investigators say paper and trash stacked against a furnace likely caused a fire that destroyed a Lincoln apartment house Saturday morning.
One resident was awakened by smoke coming from the basement of the structure at North 32nd and Q streets and had neighbors call 911. Residents who lived in the other apartments were not home at the time.
Lincoln Fire Capt. Scott Bastin said one firefighter was taken to a hospital, likely suffering from heat exhaustion. The fire was contained to the basement area and first floor.
Capt. Bastin said the fire rendered the house uninhabitable and it will probably have to be gutted. The Red Cross was helping the displaced tenants, who did not have renter's insurance.
Willie Brown had just finished getting everything ready for his wife to come home. “She had a stroke in the last month, a major stroke and today was the day she was supposed to come home. She was supposed to be discharged at 10 this morning. After everything that's happened in the last month, my wife's health and getting things back on track, it feels like I've been kicked in the teeth.”