Man who fell asleep while cooking dies in fire

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A man is dead following an apartment fire in South Austin early Saturday morning.

The Austin Fire Department was called to apartment 1313 at the Saddle Creek Apartments on the corner of Manchaca and Old Manchaca Road at 4:30a.m. Firefighters had the fire out about thirty minutes later.

Family members told KXAN that 30-year-old Adrian Darnley went out with some friends Friday night, came back home and started cooking, but then fell asleep.

“You are just used to being able to pick up the phone and call them and to me its just not real,” said Darnley’s sister, Gloria Darnley. “It’s just unbelievable.”

AFD Capt. Marc Saenz confirmed that the fire was caused by unattended cooking. He said crews didn’t originally see fire coming from the apartment, but they forced entry into the apartment after seeing flames and smoke inside. Damage was primarily confined to the kitchen, Saenz said.

Doctors pronounced the man dead at UMC Brackenridge. Paramedics performed CPR on scene. A dog that belonged to Darnley’s roommate died at the scene.

“I smelled something unusual,” said neighbor Selina Jantz. “I really wasn’t sure if it was smoke or a fire yet and I got up and sniffed around the apartment and I was pretty sure that was smoke.”

Damage is estimated to be about $20,000.

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