Milford man's death in Summit Avenue fire ruled accidental

The death of a Milford man in a single-family house fire this week has been ruled accidental.

Alexander Szabados Sr., 71, died in a house fire on Summit Avenue Tuesday afternoon. Firefighters have not yet stated the cause of the blaze, which is still under investigation. The state’s Medical Examiner’s Office, however, ruled the man’s death accidental, caused by smoke inhalation and thermal injuries. The office said that hypertension and cardio vascular disease were contributing factors.

The Tuesday fire started about 4:20 p.m., and according to reports became an intense fire very quickly.

The first fire unit on the scene secured a hose to fight the blaze, according to Fire Department Spokesman Kyle Brotherton. Neighbors were already on the scene when firefighters arrived, trying to fight the fire with garden hoses.

A second unit was right behind the first, and firefighters on that truck did a search of the house when they arrived. Upon entering the house, they found an unresponsive man in the bathroom. Rescuers attempted resuscitation but were not successful because of the man’s burns, Brotherton said.

The man was later identified as Alexander Szabados, who owned the raised ranch home with his wife, Gabriella, according to city property records.

Firefighters said Mr. Szabados was the only one home at the time of the fire.

There was considerable smoke and heat damage to the house, and the main living area was badly burned.

Firefighters quickly had the fire under control, Brotherton said.

Summit Avenue runs somewhat parallel to Edgefield Avenue, not far from Sloppy Jose’s Restaurant.

The Milford fire marshal’s office and state police fire marshal’s office are investigating the cause of the fire.

Services are scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 10, at Smith and Sefcik Funeral Home for Mr. Szabados. Visitation is from 5 to 7 p.m.

According to an obituary notice, Mr. Szabados was retired, and had previously worked as a machinist for Hiem Universal.

He was an active member of the community, and was a member of the Hungarian Club in Wallingford, a former Milford soccer and baseball coach and enjoyed league bowling.

“A loving husband, father, grandfather and brother, he will be sadly missed,” the family wrote in the obituary notice.

A prayer service will be held during the calling hours at 6:30 p.m. Interment will be private.