SALADO (February 10, 2014) Autopsy results released Monday show that Alex Torres, 30, of Salado, man died of smoke inhalation in a house fire that left nine other people homeless.
The fire broke out late last Wednesday night in a house in the 1100 block of Irene Lane in Salado.
Flames had engulfed the house by the time the first crews arrived.
Nine of the ten residents were able to escape, but Torres didn’t.
Services for Torres are at 7 p.m. Tuesday at St. Stephens Catholic Church at 601 FM 2268 in Salado.
Torres was born in Temple and graduated in 2002 from Salado High School where he was a member of both the football and track teams.
The fire was ignited by a space heater.
"He hooked up his space heaters just like every other day," said his brother, Omar Torres.
"He had two up there and I think what happened was the space heater got so hot that I believe there was a couch close to the heater and some cloth, and once it caught it was a fast burning fire."
Ivan, the youngest of the four Torres brothers, said he and his father tried to rescue Alex.
"We had to break the window and take the AC unit off to get in," Ivan said.
"We tried to get an ax to chop the wood down around so we could get in easier, but nothing really worked."
Omar said his father tried to grab Alex, and wake him up, but Alex's room, which was where the fire started, was filled with black smoke.
Candles, balloons, and flowers now mark the spot that used to be Alex Torres’ bedroom.
Friends and neighbors have rallied in support of the family.
The school district collected clothes, restaurants donated food, and friends from all over gave money.
A friend of the family, Candy Jimenez, created an online donation account through which more than $5,000 has been contributed.
"To me it's amazing and we're so grateful for it, but at the same time I would give everything back to be with my brother," Omar said.
"I'm just grateful of all my friends and all the families giving me clothes and money," Ivan said.
"Just anything to really help and just a simple text message from them saying they're praying for me is enough."