4 families homeless after fire rips through apartments - Fox 2 News Headlines

4 families homeless after fire rips through apartments

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TEMPE, Ariz. -

A fire early Thursday morning has left four families without a place to sleep. But they have an alert neighbor to thank for helping get everybody out safe.

Flames broke out at a Tempe apartment complex near McClintock and Broadway, and a man on the way to work is being hailed as a hero for helping evacuate a couple dozen people from the apartment complex.

"I saw flames coming up over the apartment so I ran towards the back doors, it shattered so I went up to the front, went up the front stairs, I knocked on all the doors I can and tell people get out there's a fire," says neighbor Earl Dennis.

Everyone got out safe, thanks to their neighbor.

"He was going to work and he was driving through the parking lot when he looked over and saw the flicker of the flame. When he got out, it already started. He called and evacuated some people too which was very helpful," says Assistant Fire Chief John Valenzuela.

"I started screaming, they didn't know what was going on, they probably thought I was a crazy person or something beating on doors but I was like, got to get ‘em out there's a fire," says Dennis.

When Tempe Fire crews arrived they evacuated the entire building due to dangerous levels of the carbon monoxide. They quickly got a handle on the fire that destroyed one apartment.

Five other apartments suffered smoke and water damage.

Now the Red Cross is helping four families find another place to stay -- and there's plenty of gratitude for the Good Samaritan who helped them all escape.

"I try to do as much as I can, we got to take care of each other."

Tempe Fire investigators are now looking into what may have sparked this fire.

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