By Esme Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A man died in Woodbury House fire early Tuesday morning, after neighbors said they heard a small explosive sound just after 6 a.m.

When they looked outside they saw the home on Meadow Lane fully engulfed. A neighbor send WCCO-TV video of the flames shooting out windows.

The Gillen family lives right next door.

“I heard a boom and I tried to go back to bed and my dog started going crazy,” Kaitlyn Gillen said.

Kaitlyn’s mother told her and her sister to get up and get out immediately.

“It was just flames. It was super-hot when we came out of the house,” Kaitlyn Gillen said.

(credit: CBS)

Josh Anderson lives across the street. He says the man who lives in the home has been there for over a decade.

“My wife looked outside and saw 30 foot flames coming from the left side of the house,” Anderson said.

He rushed to the home and kicked in the door but could not go in.

“I just couldn’t do it, it was just so hot, so much smoke. I wanted to be a hero, honestly, but it was just too overwhelming,” he said.

Police say its fortunate Anderson was not able to get in; the fire was so intense there is a good chance he would have been hurt.

After finally putting the fire out firefighters did a thorough search.

“My cops that are familiar with the area, they believe that the person who is deceased inside is the only occupant of the house, the only resident of the house. Not to say their could not have been more people there, they have done secondary and tertiary searches and they have not found anybody else,” Woodbury Police Commander John Altman said.

Investigators say it could be weeks if not months before the cause of the fire is determined.

The man who died in the fire has not been officially identified.

Esme Murphy

  1. If you look at the street view on Google maps there are two people in the picture with the yellow truck. One sitting on the steps and one standing beside the truck in front of the open door of the garage.

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