By CBSNewYork Team

CRANFORD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A fast-moving house fire claimed the lives of a woman and her dog Tuesday in Cranford, New Jersey. Grace Sinnott, 83, was killed, according to police.

But two people were saved thanks to a quick-thinking neighbor. CBS2’s Meg Baker spoke with the man who said he didn’t think twice about rushing to help.

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“We heard crackling and my wife looked out the window and said, ‘There’s a fire!’ I said, ‘Call 911’ and then I ran out the door,” said next-door neighbor Dan Rogers.

The fire started shortly after 7 a.m. on Beech Street near Tulip Street.

“Heard voices in the second-story window, I asked if they could get out. They said they didn’t think they could get out through the house,” said Rogers.

Rogers said he didn’t think twice before running to his backyard garage to grab a ladder.

“You just hope that anybody would do it for anybody else, and that’s what I did,” said Rogers.

Chopper 2 was over the scene as black smoke poured from the house.

“Very, very black smoke and lots of it. Then I saw flames from the attic,” said another neighbor.

Fire departments from multiple towns tried to squelch the flames.

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“Responded out to the scene within just a few minutes and arrived to find very heavy fire conditions and an active rescue attempt ongoing with some bystanders,” said Lt. Matthew Lubin, a fire official.

A woman, her adult son, his girlfriend and a dog were inside. The ladder Rogers used to get two of them out started melting at the top.

“That is bravery in its truest form, when you don’t even stop to think about yourself. You just jump up and try to rescue someone,” said Cranford Mayor Kathleen Miller Prunty.

The woman and her dog did not make it out.

“Unfortunately, at this time I can confirm that there has been one fatality and our thoughts and prayers are with that victim and the victim’s family,” said Lubin.

Mayor Prunty said the community is coming together to support these residents.

“We’ll embrace this family and the neighbors who are shaken up by what occurred here this morning,” Prunty said.

Fire officials said the investigation into how the fire started is ongoing. They are looking into whether smoking was involved.

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CBS2’s Meg Baker contributed to this report.

CBSNewYork Team