Man Killed in Harvard Heights House Fire

The firefighter's injury during the early morning fire is not considered life-threatening.

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A fire at a home west of downtown LA left a man dead. Lauren Coronado reports for the NBC4 News at 11 a.m. on Thursday Oct. 21, 2021.

A 23-year-old Texas man was killed and a firefighter was injured in a fire Thursday morning that damaged a house in the Harvard Heights area west of downtown Los Angeles.

"There were a total of six patients," LAFD Capt. Sean Saunders said in a statement. "Four civilians at the home were medically evaluated, however, (they) declined transport to the hospital. The fifth patient was a… male found in an upstairs bedroom, tragically beyond medical help, and was determined dead at the scene."

Firefighters responded to the 2800 block of West 14th Street at about 6:30 a.m. and extinguished the flames in the two-story building in about a half hour,
according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

The coroner's office later identified that man as Kevin James Blackwell Jr. of San Antonio. The exact cause of his death was not immediately known.

A firefighter suffered a "non-life-threatening injury" and was transported to a hospital for treatment, Saunders said.

"There were security bars on the first floor windows; however, they did not appear to impede egress." Saunders said. "The residence had smoke alarms, but their functional status was not immediately known."

The cause of the fire was under investigation.