Neighbors call Glendale man a hero after early morning triplex fire

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Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland
Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland
Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland
Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland Flames ripped through some apartments at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland
Fire tore through three Glendale apartments early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland Fire tore through three Glendale apartments early Thursday morning. By Catherine Holland

GLENDALE -- Several Glendale resident might owe their lives to their neighbor after flames ripped through a triplex at 59th and Glendale avenues early Thursday morning.

Fire crews first got the call at about 5:45 a.m.and were on the scene within just a few minutes.

Firefighters managed to contain the fast-moving flames, but not before the fire did some substantial damage. Crews were still mopping hot spots at 8:30 a.m.

It's possible that the fire started in a tree or a power pole and then spread to the structure, but fire crews have not determined the exact cause yet.

According to Daniel Valenzuela of the Glendale Fire Department, everybody inside -- nine people, including three young children and a blind elderly woman -- escaped thanks to one of their neighbors.

Mike Obney said his girlfriend had gotten up for a glass of water and saw flames shooting from a nearby shed behind their apartment. Obney sprang into action, running outside to pound on his neighbors' doors. He made sure everybody was able to get safely outside.

"We tried to get a hose to put it out, but it was too late," Obney said.

Thanks to Obney, none of the residents was injured.

Investigators are looking into the cause of the fire.