2020 | Police & Fire

Police identify woman found dead in Leisure World fire

Autopsy results not yet available

Via Pete Piringer

Montgomery County police on Tuesday night publicly identified a woman who was found dead after a fire at a Leisure World apartment complex this past weekend.

At about 1:30 a.m. on Saturday, a fire broke out on the third floor of the three-story apartment building. Firefighters arrived to find “heavy fire conditions,” officials said at the time.

Once the fire was out, firefighters found a woman dead in her apartment. In an email to Bethesda Beat on Tuesday night, police identified the woman as 89-year-old Louise Burrows.

The results of an autopsy to determine Burrows’ cause of death were not available.

The cause of the fire that displaced about 50 people is “officially undetermined,” Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services spokesman Pete Piringer said on Monday.

Investigators believe, however, the fire started on a third-floor balcony and went undetected for “some time” and spread to the roof before emergency crews were called.

Leisure World is “age-restricted,” meaning only people 55 and older can live there.

The apartment building sustained significant damage and is “uninhabitable,” Piringer said.

The Red Cross and the Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security provided temporary shelter to about 35 people who were displaced, Piringer said.

Caitlynn Peetz can be reached at caitlynn.peetz@bethesdamagazine.com