Melrose kitchen fire kills woman in her 90s

MELROSE, Mass. — A Melrose woman in her 90s was killed in a fire believed to be caused by a cooking accident.

Melrose Fire Capt. John White said investigators believe the resident of the first-floor unit in the Grove Street, duplex was cooking when something caught fire and she picked it up to move it across the kitchen to the sink.

"We believe she was preparing her meal, and unfortunately something happened on the stove," White told Boston 25 News. "We believe she was actively trying to take care of the accident she had, and that's when we believe she fell - tripped or fell - on her way trying to move that stuff."

Witnesses noticed the cloud of smoke billowing from the victim's apartment.

Twelve-year-old Tyler Audet was walking home from the YMCA when he saw the fire.

"This window, there's tons of smoke pouring out the window," Tyler said, "and then all of a sudden, the window, it shatters, and a huge flame comes out of it."

Tyler and another passerby called 911 as neighbors tried frantically to help evacuate the building.

"They're banging on the house, like, 'OK, is anyone in there?'" Tyler said. "I was really nervous, yeah. I was really scared."

Firefighters quickly put out the flames before finding the victim's body in the kitchen.

Investigators spent hours combing through the charred debris, as police helped close off a portion of the street.

No one in the second-floor apartment was hurt, but the unit was damaged by the smoke.

Officials did not immediately release the victim's name.