Neighbors are stunned after Waukesha house fire

CREATED Feb 15, 2014 - UPDATED: Feb 17, 2014

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UPDATE: The Waukesha Fire Department has confirmed the victim treated and transported to the hospital was Michael Coyle, 34, who resides in the home.

Investigators have determined the fire started the garage.

The investigation is ongoing.


WAUKESHA -- It was a shocking scene in a Waukesha neighborhood - as a badly burned man ran from a burning home for help.

Neighbors watched Friday night as the victim jumped into the snow to try and escape the flames.

"We just heard a big boom,” remembers Albert Garcia. “And then all of a sudden, I got up and opened the blinds and saw the fire."

Garcia and his wife live just across the street from the scene on Motor Ave. She called 911.

They saw the orange flames shoot out of the garage. But what they saw next really shocked them.

It was the sight of their neighbor in agony.

“Thirty seconds went by and he came running out of his house and he jumped right into the snow bank. He got up and was screaming and everything," shares Garcia.

They watched as he jumped into another snow bank by the road. That's when Garcia saw two men drag him away from the fire.

“His face and everything was burned and his legs were all burned,” recalls Garcia.

While the two men tried to help the victim, other neighbors helped firefighters.

"Neighbors were there trying to break out windows to get ventilation to the fire," stated Sergeant Jerry Habanek of the Waukesha Police Department.

It’s a sight Garcia and his wife won't soon forget.

"I’m very shocked. Like I said, nothing like that has ever happened here in our neighborhood," says Garcia.

Police say the fire doesn't appear to be suspicious. They're still trying to find a cause. They tell TODAY’S TMJ4 the man inside was taken by Flight for Life to St. Mary's Burn Center. He's in critical condition.