An 87-year-old Evanston resident died in a fire that broke out about noon in his home at 1516 Brummel St.

Fire Division Chief Kimberly Kull says fire units responding to the scene found heavy black smoke coming from the basement of the one-story home and sounded a box alarm that brought firefighters from neighboring communities to assist.

Kull says the homeowners discovered the fire when they arrived home. And the 87-year-old man went into the building to investigate the source of the smoke.

Firefighters found him at the bottom of the basement stairs. 

Kull says he was transported to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

The cause of the fire has yet to be determined.

The 1500 block of Brummel Street was closed this afternoon to allow for the staging of fire vehicles and will be reopened once crews are finished with their investigation. Kull says community members are asked to stay clear of the area until later this evening.

Update 3/11/22: Kull now says investigators have learned that the man who died in the fire had been inside the home when the fire started, but was unable to get out because of smoke and fire conditions. His wife returned to the house, saw smoke and called the fire department.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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