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Taunton Man Dies Trying To Escape Burning Home

TAUNTON (CBS) — A Taunton man was killed trying to escape his burning home early Thursday morning.

Jeff Baker, 65, was apparently sleeping when flames broke out in his Tremont Street house around 3:30 a.m.

Taunton Fire
Firefighters shut down part of Tremont Street early Thursday. (WBZ-TV)

Neighbors told WBZ-TV a taxi driver saw the fire, ran up to the house and banged on the door trying to wake up Baker, who lived alone with his dog.

Taunton Fire Chief Tim Bradshaw told reporters it appeared Baker was trying to escape but couldn't get out the front door.

Firefighters had a tough time getting inside because there was so much debris on the first floor.

There's no word yet on how the fire started.

Jeff Baker
Jeff Baker. (WBZ-TV)

"He was a great man, very, very helpful, always in a great mood," Baker's neighbor Michael Johnson told WBZ, "An amazing man. He taught me a lot."

Johnson said Baker recently had hip surgery and walked with a bit of a limp.

"I was just hoping he would come out," Johnson said, "That's all I kept saying just hoping they would get him out."

No other information is available at this point in the investigation.

The state fire marshal said 16 people have now died in fires in Massachusetts so far in 2015.

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