A 40-year-old man who died last Wednesday in a four-alarm fire that all but destroyed a building housing dozens of apartments and businesses in San Francisco’s Mission District has been identified, according to the medical examiner’s office.
San Francisco resident Mauricio Orellana was the only person who died in the fire at 22nd and Mission streets. At least six people, including a firefighter, also suffered minor injuries in the blaze, according to fire officials.
Orellana’s niece, Sandra Orellana, created a memorial page on GoFundMe.com to raise money for her uncle’s burial and funeral.
“He was so young no one could have expected this,” Sandra Orellana wrote on the online fundraising site at http://www.gofundme.com/l62rvo.
She said her uncle was a good man who was greatly loved.
The fatal fire was reported at the apartment building around 6:45 p.m. Wednesday. First responders arrived at the building to find flames shooting from its side.
Police and firefighters evacuated several residents from the building. Six people were transported to the hospital, including a firefighter who suffered dehydration and five civilians who suffered minor to moderate injuries, fire officials said.
Orellana was evacuated from the building and emergency crews rendered aid, but he died at the scene, police said.
Investigators are looking into reports from residents that fire escapes were blocked and fire alarms in the building malfunctioned, complicating evacuations, according to the fire department.
Surrounding buildings were evacuated as well Wednesday evening in case the fire spread. The building at 22nd and Mission streets was left uninhabitable by the fire.
At least 40 residents of the building stayed at an American Red Cross shelter on the City College of San Francisco campus at 22nd and Bartlett streets Wednesday night, police said.
While the cause of the fire remains under investigation and could take weeks to determine, police and fire officials said that it does not appear foul play or arson played a factor in the fire.
Hannah Albarazi, Bay City News