A 65-year-old man died and two others were treated for smoke inhalation after a fire at an apartment complex on the 7700 block of SW Pfaffle Street.
The fire started Thursday afternoon in one of the units at the Hawthorne Villa apartments. Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue investigators said it started on accident in a bed in the apartment, likely the result of smoker carelessness.
Timothy Slosky was visiting friends Allen Diamond and Patrick Ordiway, who live in the complex, when they spotted smoke coming from a ground-level apartment.
They notified managers and maintenance workers, who called 911 and tried to get into the apartment.
"They tried to get the person in there to open up but nothing was happening. So they started beating on the door and they tried to kick it in a couple times," Slosky said.
He watched firefighters pull the man from the apartment. Officials have not released the name or gender of the person found in the apartment.
"You could tell they were having a hard time resuscitating him," Slosky said. "They were pumping his chest and no matter what they did, they just couldn't bring him back. It was pretty sad."
"I don't know him that well but I'm sure that we've lost a good person today," said neighbor Diamond, who said the man was well-known throughout the complex.
Some residents were evacuated during the fire.
Two were treated for smoke inhalation. One was transported to the hospital for further treatment.
The cause of the fire is under investigation. Tigard police officers were also investigating the fire, which is standard policy.
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