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Heat Hazard Higher Fighting Fatal Fire

By Dan Verbeck

Lenexa, KS – A man has been found dead in a three story apartment building destroyed by fire today in Lenexa. Fire was so intense he wasn't found until that section of the building could be searched.

Flames could be seen for miles as fire departments from Merriam and Overland Park joined Lenexa counterparts.

Jason Rhodes of Overland Park Fire Department said not long after the fire was labelled 'under control'--"Brutal, brutal condition in the heat. In a building that structurally was very unstable. A lot of collapses. And then at the end of the day to find a victim, a fatality, everyone's spirits just sunk. It was the worst possible ending."

The man, unidentified, was found on the third floor of Oak Park Village apartments at 96th and Halsey, just West of Oak Park Mall.

Three fire departments tried to save the building.

Rhodes says heat was so high inside and outside the building it was hard to keep core temperatures of firefighters out of the danger zone. Fire investigation comes debris cools.

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