60-Year-Old Woman Killed in Queens House Fire

NY Daily News - January 08, 2018


A 60-year-old woman was killed in a fire in her Queens home Sunday, neighbors and officials said.

Rita Sklar was inside her two-story house on 217th St. near 67th Ave. in Oakland Gardens when flames broke out around 11:20 a.m., authorities said.

Medics rushed her to North Shore Manhasset Hospital, where she died.

"I heard a woman screaming. I looked out and saw the fire," said Dave Wong, 60, who lives across the street. "She was alone. The husband wasn't home."

"She's in really bad health, unable to move," said Wong, who told the Daily News he thought she was recovering from brain cancer. "When they took her out, they were doing chest compressions. She was badly burned."

On a Facebook page, which neighbors said belonged to Sklar’s husband, a video is posted that uses the word “tumors in her head” and “chemotherapy” to describe her condition.

Next-door neighbors tried to warn the residents inside the burning house, shouting, "Fire! Fire!"

"She didn't make it," said a distraught relative who arrived at the scene. "We don't know what caused the fire. They are still investigating."

The Fire Marshal will determine the cause of the blaze.