APARTMENT FIRE

Sunset Landing residents await word of when they can re-enter the building Friday morning, Oct. 4, in the wake of a fire that began the previous afternoon.

BRIDGMAN — A Thursday, Oct. 3, fire on the south end of the Sunset Landing Apartment building at 9587 Red Arrow Highway in Bridgman caused residents of its 55 occupied units to be evacuated.

Fire department officials were inspecting the building Friday morning to assess when residents could re-enter.

One of the people waiting to hear when they could return was Agnes Kovach, who said her Egyptian Mau cat, "Prince," woke her from a Thursday afternoon nap in her second-floor unit just before the alarms began going off.

She said the fire struck the top (third) floor on the building's south side, adding that here wasn't a lot of smoke while she was still inside.

"I ran upstairs and knocked on a few people's doors … just as I got out I noticed the smoke was at that end," she noted.

The Bridgman Police Department posted "A BIG thank you to everyone that helped" at the Sunset Landing Apartments fire on its Facebook page.

"Harbor Country Mission really came through with water, food & the use of their building so the Red Cross could set up to help those needing shelter. More than 50 residents & pets have been displaced for the time being but thankfully, no injuries were reported," the post continued.

People on the scene Friday morning said Harbor Country Mission (HCM), which has a warehouse across the street, fed those evacuated from the blaze with pizzas from the nearby Roma Pizza restaurant.

Mary Westgate of the American Red Cross said about 10 residents of the apartments spent the night at a shelter set up inside Lake Township Hall.

Kovach said she spent about three hours at the HCM facility before going to the Lake Township Hall shelter.

There are a total of 58 units in the apartment building. The fire reportedly began about 4 p.m. in one upper-floor unit.

A second Sunset Landing building was destroyed by fire in 2003.

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