Jax Beach resident dies as a result of a building fire on New Year’s Day

The State Fire Marshall and Jacksonville Beach Police Department are investigating a deadly fire from Sunday morning.

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Just before six this morning, a two-story building with a rooftop patio caught fire. Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department spokesperson Captain Eric Prosswimmer said that the second floor housed two people.

“Red Cross is here for the other remaining occupant, we weren’t sure if it was going to be two or one. We knew someone was missing and we searched hard,” Prosswimmer said.

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When the fire started, both occupants were home. One person managed to get out while the other died as a result of the fire. We are working to learn the name of the deceased, but no information is being released until all of his or her family can be notified.

Action News Jax had been on the scene of the fire all morning long. Once the smoke and the fog began to lighten up, JFRD crews were still investigating, trying to find out what happened and why.

“The family that’s lived here has been here for decades,” Jax Beach Mayor Chris Hoffman said.

Hoffman knows the deceased. She said on the now-charred second floor was a married couple. She was there to show support for her friends.

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“It’s a tragic day, just a really hard way to start the year but I’m so proud of everyone here who’s been working hard to put out the fire,” Hoffman said.

At this time there are no other injuries, and the cause of the fire is unknown. JFRD said there is no flame damage to the building but there is water damage after crews fought flames for almost an hour straight.

JFRD ended up having to call a second alarm assignment. That is when extra fire squads are needed but it doesn’t necessarily mean those firefighters will be put on alert.

Action News Jax has learned that the building is a boutique on the first floor, it’s managed by Ashby Social. We’ve also learned that the victim inside the fire had a dog. JFRD said upon their arrival they could hear the dog barking. The dog survived the fire.

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Related read: JFRD: One confirmed dead after commercial building catches on fire

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