Woman dies in Windcrest house fire

Bexar County Fire Marshal inve­stigating cause of fire in 500 block of Balfour

An 85-year-old woman died and her husband hospitalized after a house fire broke out in Windcrest late Monday night.

Bexar County Fire Marshal's officials say crews responded to the fire in the 500 block of Balfour around 9 p.m. and found heavy smoke upon arrival.

Julie Fagan was pronounced dead at the scene. William Fagan was taken to an area hospital for smoke inhalation.

Officials said firefighters had a difficult time getting into the home because of burglar bars on the door and, once they entered, they had a tough time searching because of clutter inside the home.

"We got the burglar bars off, opened the front door. There was a gentleman just on the inside of the door. The house was full of smoke. We were able to pull him out," said Dan Reese, chief of the Windcrest Volunteer Fire Department.

Neighbors said the Fagans lived in the home for about 40 years. Next-door neighbor Mary Lou Click said the couple had been greeters at the airport, but now that they were in their 80s, they weren't as active as they had been.

"They were good neighbors, and I'm going to miss them," Click said. "They were very good to me when I lost my husband."

She said she plans to do what she can to help William Fagan with his loss.

Reese said the fire is believed to have started in the back and spread to the attic and through the roof, and he considered it a total loss.

A cause of the fire was unknown, but Bexar County Fire Marshal's officials planned to examine lightning data in the area Tuesday morning and take a canine unit to the home to investigate further.

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