TEANECK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Authorities have recovered one body and will resume the search for a second after a fast-moving fire ripped through an elderly couple’s home in New Jersey.
The fire rapidly reached three alarms after flames and smoke engulfed the two-story home of Roseanne and Gerald Ryan on Sherman Avenue around 6:30 a.m. Sunday.
Christina Nataretta, a home health aide who often visited the couple, said Mrs. Ryan had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, and she often warned her against smoking around oxygen tanks that were in the home.
“Constantly she was smoking with the cigarette and the oxygen on,” she told 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck. “When I explained to her that she could blow up the house she told me to mind my own business and not to tell her anything.”
Embers also spread to the houses next door. The Teaneck Police Benevolent Association Local 215 has set up a GoFundMe for the Schreck family, who lived in the home next door – saying much of the children’s clothes, shoes, and general comforts were destroyed.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.