Woman killed in Tacoma apartment fire identified

A 71-year-old woman found dead Tuesday inside her Tacoma apartment after a fire has been identified as Diana White.

The Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office has not yet determined a cause of the death.

White’s body was found in a basement unit in the Annobee apartments, a senior housing complex in the 300 block of North I Street.

Firefighters were called to the building just before 11 a.m. The sprinkler system inside White’s home extinguished the flames before crews arrived.

Some residents were leaving the building when firefighters got to the scene and many others needed jhelp. A bus was brought in to shelter the seniors while firefighters dealt with the blaze.

The fire started when a cigarette ignited a chair in the living room, according to the Fire Department.

White’s body was found in the chair but it did not appear she tried to escape, police spokeswoman Loretta Cool said. It’s unknown whether White fell asleep or was unable to get up.