CREATED Dec. 26, 2012
Council Bluffs, IA - Boarded up windows, burned siding, and 'no trespassing' signs remind neighbors on Bennett Avenue in Council Bluffs of Sunday's deadly fire on their street.
"We didn't know until we woke up Sunday morning to get ready for church and I saw people throwing stuff out his back door and I looked around and saw that the back end of the house was charred," Jennifer Kizer said.
Inside fire fighters find 90-year-old Robert Kissel unconscious. Paramedics rush him to the hospital in critical condition.
Neighbors and relatives grieve the loss of a father, friend, and a World War II veteran who loved to tell stories. "He worked in Washington, DC for a long time so he would talk about his run-ins with the presidents, the past presidents, just loved to tell his story," Kizar said.
A spokesman for the Council Bluffs fire department says Kissel's daughter, who called 9-1-1, escaped the fire through this basement window. She could not help her father get out.
Through her grief, Jennifer Kizar says she'll cherish memories of the conversations and family dinners she had with Kissel and his daughter. "It's sad cause he was such a kind neighbor."
Kissel's family members declined to speak with KMTV Action 3 News. The cause of the fire is under investigation.