Hoffman Estates police and firefighter/paramedics responded about 8:22 a.m. Monday to a report of an explosion or popping noise and a man down on fire with burns with a backyard shed burning in the 1000 block of Hillcrest Boulevard. Firefighters arrived to find a burn victim with a shed fully involved with flames that extended to a utility pole. Firefighters had to standby when they recognized that a power line was down and arcing. The power line from the pole to the house was reported down and Com Ed was requested to expedite to the scene. Once Com Ed workers interrupted power to the scene, firefighters were able to extinguish the fire. Firefighters also alerted neighbors to stay out of their backyards because live power lines were down on a fence.
Before firefighters arrived, a neighbor came to help David Mugerditchian and smothered flames on his clothing after he heard multiple explosions from the area of the backyard.
David Mugerditchian was transported to St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estates, and then airlifted to Loyola University Medical Center’s burn unit in Maywood. He was pronounced dead Monday night at 7:19 p.m.
Mugerditchian, a veteran U.S. Marine, rescued Frank Pacey, 69, in April 1997, also in the 1000 block of Hillcrest Boulevard, by placing a ladder up to a second-story balcony when Pacey was trapped in the second story of his home, which burned to the ground after the rescue.
Fire investigators have ruled out foul play. No word yet whether David Mugerditchian checked on the shed before the power line fell or after the power line fell. Also, no confirmation whether electric power problems caused the shed fire or whether the shed fire caused the power line to drop.
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