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Man who fell to his death in fire at Ellisville condo complex identified

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ELLISVILLE • Police have identified the man who died Monday after falling from a third-story window during a fire at an Ellisville condominium complex. 

Patrick Hurley, 55, lived in the complex in the 300 block of Carmel Woods Drive, southeast of Manchester and Kiefer Creek roads where the fire started about 11:20 a.m. Monday. 

Ellisville police say they have not yet determined the cause of the blaze but expect an investigative report on the cause to be completed within two weeks. 

Chief Mike Krause of the Metro West Fire Protection District said Monday that Hurley was seen hanging out of a window as smoke filled his condo moments before he fell to his death on a concrete patio below. Fire officials said they did not know whether he jumped or fell, but witnesses said it appeared that he lost consciousness from the smoke before the fall. 

The man’s neighbor Gail Coil said she could hear him calling for help.

“You could tell he was screaming for his life,” she said.

Coil said she went outside and saw smoke billowing out of the condo as the man was hanging from the third-floor window with his leg dangling outside. He slumped over and fell three stories, she said.

“It looked like the smoke just overpowered him and he fell,” she said. “I don’t think he jumped.”

The damage to the condos appeared limited to Hurley's apartment and nearby units.

Fire district spokesman Michael Thiemann said Monday that the building did not have a sprinkler system. Sprinklers weren’t required when the complex was built in 1973.

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