ODESSA — Linda and Joe Marsala were just waking up Monday morning when they heard a neighbor's screams.
Linda Marsala peered out of a crescent window of their home in the Silver Dollar Golf and Trap Club community, saw smoke and knew something was wrong.
The Marsalas rushed outside to find a doublewide mobile home engulfed in flames. The neighbor, a woman, was yelling for help for her husband.
"He was inside, and she couldn't get him out," Linda said.
Hillsborough County Fire Rescue crews arrived at the home on Golf Vista Court about 5:40 a.m. and had to use tanker trucks because of a lack of fire hydrants in the area, said department spokesman Corey Dierdorff.
They found one person dead inside. Another who escaped the fire was taken to a local hospital with injuries described as life-threatening but was improving later Monday, Dierdorff said.
The cause of the fire remained under investigation.
Authorities had yet to release the victim's names Monday night, as they were working to inform relatives.
Neighbors spoke glowingly of the couple that had moved into the immaculately kept mobile home about 18 years ago. The man used a wheelchair to get around, Linda Marsala said.
"They were lovely people," she said. "God bless his heart."
Contact Tony Marrero at email@example.com or (813) 226-3374. Follow @tmarrerotimes.