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82-Year-Old Man Suffers Serious Burns in Fire at Baruch Senior Houses

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An 82-year old man was badly burned in a fire at the Baruch senior apartments at 72 Columbia St. late last night.  The fire broke out in Juan Reyes’ sixth floor apartment shortly before midnight.

Camile Napoleon, a tenant association leader, told the Daily News, “His window faces the street and I knew immediately it was him… I saw paramedics take him out the building. He was moving but I didn’t see him say anything.”

The fire was put out at about 12:25 a.m. Firefighters have not yet determined how it started. Roberto Napoleon, tenant association president, told the News that Reyes recently dismissed his home attendant because he suspected her of stealing. “She was supposed to be replaced but it’s been at least a few weeks and no one has been sent. He has been getting around on his own,” said Napoleon.

Reyes’ family lives in Cuba. Camile Napoleon described him as a “tough cookie,” but a “real good guy” who participates in all of the community events at the NYCHA complex. She told Channel 2, “He had burns on his side, he looked like, really bad burns. We’re just praying that he’s gonna be okay.” Reyes was taken to New York Presbyterian/Cornell Hospital.

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