MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – Miami Beach firefighters are investigating the cause of a fire that left two people dead early Thursday morning.
Family members identified one of the victims as Magaly Sada. “She was a good mother, perfect grandmother, she loved everybody she got along with everybody. She was a beautiful lady,” said son Mark Sada.
Magaly Sada was found dead in her first floor apartment. “They found her in the living room. She was trying to make it out but she never made it,” said Mark Sada who said his mother did have some trouble walking.
When firefighters arrived at the 2-story St. George apartment building at the corner of 6th Street and Euclid Avenue around 12:30 a.m., smoke and flames billowed from the building.
“We were in the apartment and just heard the fire alarms go off and we weren’t sure what it was,” said displaced resident Bryan Coronel. “I walked outside and like you could smell the smoke.”
When firefighters rushed in to search for victims, they found two people, Sada who was dead inside her first floor apartment and a man who lived on the second floor.
Neighbors say he was trying to save his dogs.
“He didn’t even come out. He peeped out his window and he never came back down,” explained Julieta Vega. “My dad was screaming at him to come out, but I guess he didn’t have time to.”
The man in that second story apartment was rushed to Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital but he was later pronounced dead.
Residents said his dogs also died.
“He loved his animals. It was a part of his family,” said friend Niucra Fonte. “He was very, very close to his dogs. He loved his dogs as if it was a person”
Mark Sada said his mother was a friend of the other person who died. “They used to talk a lot outside because he used to bring both the dogs out here and she was a dog person…it was just tragic that both of them had to be the ones,” he said.
Neighbors said Magaly Sada was well-known and well-loved in the neighborhood. Terry Brennan used to help her take out her trash. “She used to always say ‘every day is a good day’ and she used to tell me that all the time, ‘every day is a good day.’ That’s what I loved about her. It breaks my heart to see her gone.”
Two firefighters were hurt during the firefight. One was hospitalized but is expected to be okay.
There are more than a dozen residents who remain displaced but are getting assistance from the South Florida Red Cross with housing, food and clothing.