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Man Killed After Fire Burns Through Elmhurst Home, Lit Cigarette Likely Cause

90-17 55 Avenue before the fire (Google Maps)

May 20, 2020 By Michael Dorgan

A man was killed after a fire burned through his Elmhurst home Wednesday morning.

Paul Agopian, 77, was inside his two-story wood-frame house at 90-17 55 Ave., when the deadly fire broke out.

A preliminary investigation revealed that Agopian may have been smoking in his bedroom which led to the outbreak of the fire, according to the police. Agopian then found himself trapped inside the room and could not escape the inferno, police said.

The FDNY was called out to the blaze at 5:10 a.m. and a dozen fire units with 60 personnel arrived on the scene a short time after, according to a fire department spokesperson.

Firefighters got the blaze under control at 6:32 a.m. and found Agopian inside his bedroom. He was unconscious and unresponsive, according to police.

EMS pronounced the victim dead at the scene, police said.

Three other individuals were inside the house when the fire broke out and fled to safety. Two of those individuals required medical assistance, police said.

Two firefighters were transferred to Cornell Hospital with minor injuries, the FDNY said.

The Fire Marshal will ultimately determine the cause of the fire and the investigation is ongoing.

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