TEMPLE TERRACE, Fla. (WFLA) — A woman died after a fire ripped through a Temple Terrace apartment building early Sunday morning.
First responders were called to 11115 Normandy Place in The Park at Monument Terrace Apartments just before 3 a.m.
The victim was identified as Tenecia Brannon, 28, of Tampa.
Brannon was visiting a friend’s apartment when the fire broke out. Others in the building were able to escape the flames, but Brannon died in the fire.
Her parents told News Channel 8’s Corey Davis that she was a hairstylist and had a bright future.
Her body was discovered Sunday afternoon by investigators.
Nearby apartments were evacuated and the Temple Terrace Fire Department, with help from Hillsborough County and Tampa crews, started to fight the flames.
Temple Terrace Fire Chief Ian Kemp said it could take months to determine the cause of the fire because of the extensive damage.
“It’s heartbreaking. It’s heartbreaking when you lose everything,” said Eileen Rydzewski, a neighbor who lost her apartment in the fire.
“I head out to look out the front window and I see blaze …just out. So I’m like ‘hey, get out get out get out,’” said Steven Rimmer, who safely escaped the fire on Sunday morning.
Officials said twelve apartments were affected, and many of those units were destroyed. Several displaced families are being assisted by the Red Cross.
“We have not been back, we have not been allowed in the apartment for some time. So I don’t know … I’m told the building is going, so I don’t think there is anything left of ours,” Rimmer told News Channel 8.
“We’ve got some family come down, we have a place to stay for now. We’ve gotten some money from friends, the church and other places… And use that to rebuild, find another place …. That’s all we can do,” Rimmer continued.
Nadine Cine, another resident, was not at home when the fire broke out. She came back to the scene on Sunday to assess the damage.
“Somebody notified me throughout the day that your apartment might be on fire, and I was like, ‘what?’ I had to go to work. So I went to work and I was just coming here right now to see that the apartment is burnt. ”
Despite being displaced, Nadine tells News Channel 8 she feels fortunate to be alive.
“Life is…my life is okay. My mom is always there too so, we’re okay, so that is the most important thing to me.”
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
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