CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - One person died in a house fire near Enon Elementary School on Thursday morning.
Chesterfield Fire and EMS responded to the scene at 14400 block of Heather Stone Drive to find a home engulfed in flames.
Crews got the scene within eights minutes of neighbors calling 911 just after 5 a.m.
"Part of the roof had collapsed; at that point, crews had to take a defensive approach," explained Lt. Jason Elmore.
More than 20 firefighters fought the flames from the outside of the home as walls collapsed, causing a small brush fire behind the home.
Donna Heilman and other neighbors could smell smoke and got worried when they saw flames in the sky in their quiet Chester cul-de-sac.
In nearly 40 years of living in the Heather Hill subdivison, Heilman says they have never seen such an intense house fire.
"Oh my gosh! And I ran and called 9-1-1," Heilman said. "At the back door I could smell smoke, and when I walked through on my front window I could see an orange glow, so I walked out and I saw the fire."
The fire took about 50 minutes to control. After the fire was out, firefighters discovered a body in the home. Investigators say they believe the fire started in a bedroom, and the victim was found in a bedroom in the home.
Officials have not released the identity of the victim or cause of the fire, but a neighbor says a man lived there and often kept to himself.
The medical examiner will determine the cause and manner of death of the victim. As police and fire continue to investigate and determine a cause, neighbors say they are heartbroken for the victim's family.
"It's just so sad," said Heilman. "Our prayers are with them."
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