NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – A man is dead following a fire Sunday night in the Leonidas neighborhood.

The fire started inside a wooden shed on Cohn Street.

Neighbors, who live around Cohn Street, gathered around what used to be a “man cave” Monday morning where their friend, 64-year-old Larry Williams, used to spend his time.

“He just went in there, sometimes it would be really cold, and he’d go in there and sit down and watch TV,” a nearby neighbor explained. “He was going in there to watch some TV. He had a TV in there.”

That was the last time neighbors saw Williams.

“Because I had just left him out here last night,” the neighbor said. “I said, ‘Man, I’m going to go home and watch the game, the football game. He said, ‘All right.'”

Shortly after 7:40 p.m. Sunday night, New Orleans firefighters received a call about a fire at a wooden shed behind a house and that a person was trapped inside.

According to a fire department spokesman, once firefighters arrived five minutes later, they searched the property but could not find anyone.

Once the fire was extinguished, which took about thirty minutes, they found Williams deceased in the center of the shed.

“I think it’s sad,” neighbor Robert Smith said. “I think he could have, should have been able to get out of there, but things happen. I mean, I’m going to miss him because he’s a good friend of mine.”

Now, neighbors of Williams say they are reminded each day is a gift.

“Well, you can’t take it for granted,” the neighbor said. “That’s for sure. Anything can happen. I never thought this would happen.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but police say Williams was found on the couch near a space heater and may have been smoking.

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