Man found dead after being trapped in bedroom during house fire in southeast Houston, HFD says

A man is dead after a fire tore through a home in southeast Houston Wednesday, officials with the Houston Fire Department said.

HOUSTON – A man is dead after a fire tore through a home in southeast Houston Wednesday, officials with the Houston Fire Department said.

HFD crews responded to reports of a fire at a home located in the Sunnyside neighborhood in the 5300 block of Wenda Street around 11 p.m.

Officials said when they arrived at the scene, they saw heavy flames and smoke coming from the home. Crews made entry into the residence and did a search but didn’t find anyone initially.

According to crews, they found the man, who has been identified as Russell Waddy, in a bedroom during the third search of the home, but he was already dead. Firefighters said there were a lot of items and debris in the room that made it difficult to locate the victim.

At this time, HFD Arson units and homicide units with the Houston Police Department are investigating. No one else was reported to be in the residence at the time of the fire, officials said.

“He was a wonderful man,” Shaniqua Lewis, a neighbor said. “Everybody back here is pretty much family. We all take care of each other. He pretty much grew up on this street. He’s been living here basically his whole life.”

Officials said a big concern is heater safety during cold snaps.

“Folks are trying to keep themselves warm. We always want to make sure we are preaching heater safety,” HFD Deputy Chief Isaac Garcia said. “Right now, we have our investigators investigating whether or not heaters were found. We do not have that information yet.”

Police said they are awaiting the victim’s autopsy results.

Anyone with information in this case is urged to contact the HPD Homicide Division at (713) 308-3600.

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