The Santa Clara County Coroner's Office identified the man who died Tuesday morning in a two-alarm fire in Sunnyvale as 77-year-old Solomon Shatz. The fire also destroyed his home.
Neighbors told firefighters that an elderly man lives at the home.
Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety Capt. Jeff Hunter said the blaze was reported at the corner of Fisherhawk and Cardigan drives at about 5 a.m. and the single-story house was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived. Crews fought the fire defensively to prevent it from spreading.
They managed to control the blaze, but the house was left with its roof caved in and the exterior walls unstable.
Next-door neighbor Satesh Balakrishnan said he awoke to have firefighters knocking on his door. "It was blazing really high," he said. "We were in a panic. We just had to get out."
He described Shatz as a nice widower, and a retired engineer.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Bay City News contributed to this report.