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Oakland Tribune
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Friends, family remember life of
UC student killed in fire
 
By Marian Liu
CORRESPONDENT
 
OAKLAND -- They were three parts to a whole. And now there's only two left.
 
Morgan, 29, Matt, 26, and Bradley Evans, 23, did everything together. They were inseparable, but early Sunday morning a fire took the youngest brother away, leaving the whole family in shock.
 
"This was a terrible, terrible waste of a young talent," said his mother, Scottia Evans, from her home in Newport Beach. "In this day and age where everyone worries about the next generation, he was going to be a star."
 
The fire may have been caused by a space heater that burned so intensely that it fell through the first floor to the basement, authorities said Monday.
 
Fire officials said the 7:10 a.m. fire in the 5200 block of Desmond Street raced through the two-story home. Bradley Evans, who was a guest at the house, was found upstairs in a bed around 7:30 a.m.
 
Although five others had managed to escape to safety, it was too late for the University of California, Berkeley psychology student. Evans was set to graduate in May. His family described him as "everything." His friends said he was cool, compassionate, funny, and loving.
 
Last summer he rode with the Cal team on the AIDS ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles.
Evans had completed his graduation requirements in December and was just a few months away taking that memorable walk across the Greek Theater stage wearing a cap and gown.
 
After graduation, Evans and his best friend Noah Singer were planning to travel around with their band, the Fillup Phil. Evans played bass and sang backup while Singer played guitar and sang. They performed in popular San Francisco spots including Paradise Lounge, Club Boomerang, Hotel Utah, and at Blake's in Berkeley. They had just found a new drummer and were planning to ask him to join the band on Monday. Singer was still in shock Monday.

"We were young and we thought that we could do this. We thought we could go out there and have so much fun," said Singer. The two friends lived together all four years at Cal. He said almost every memory of college included Evans. They were so close that their friends nicknamed them "Broah." They shared the same songs, the same movies, and recited the same movie lines. He still remembers Evans' smile, a smile that took over his whole body. "He would get a kick out of anything," said 23-year-old David Fruchbom, a friend of Evans since third grade. "Last week we were just reading about these seeing-eye ponies with sneakers in TIME magazine and he was on the floor laughing.

"My memory of Brad is still so vivid. It almost feels like he's just going to walk in, like he isn't gone."
 
The vice chancellor of student affairs at UC Berkeley plans to fly the flag at half-staff on Evans' graduation day, May 21. A memorial service will be held at 3:30 p.m. Friday at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, 600 St. Andrews Road, Newport Beach. Scottia Evans, his mother, said, "It will be a celebration of a life well-lived with much promise."
 
Oakland Tribune
Fire victim's family sets up foundation
 
February 02, 2001
 
FROM STAFF REPORTS
 
The family of Bradley Evans, the student at the University of California, Berkeley, who died in a fire Sunday, has established a foundation in his name to provide funding for scholarships.
 
On Saturday night Evans was at the house of friends on Desmond Street in Oakland celebrating their graduation and upcoming trip to Europe. He stayed over after the party. At 7:10 a.m. Sunday, a fire broke out caused by a heater, authorities say. Five other UC Berkeley students escaped, but the UC Berkeley psychology student did not.
 
A memorial service will be held at 3:30 p.m. today at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, 600 St. Andrews Road, Newport Beach. In addition, the vice chancellor of student affairs at UC Berkeley plans to fly the flag at half-staff on Evans' planned graduation day, May 21.

For more information on Bradley's foundation, write the Brad Evans Foundation, Box 456,

Balboa Island CA 92662.
 
 
 
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San Francisco Chronicle
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UC Berkeley Student Dies In House Fire
He was asleep at friend's home
 
Kelly St. John,
Chronicle Staff Writer
Monday, January 29, 2001

A UC Berkeley senior who stayed at a friend's house after a party was found dead yesterday morning after a fire engulfed the Oakland home.

Bradley Evans, 23, lived in Berkeley but was spending the night in a spare bedroom at 5247 Desmond St. when a fast-moving fire started downstairs at about 7 a.m.

Five others managed to escape the fire, including one man, Brent Steele, who jumped off the roof, injuring his head and back. Steele was taken to Highland Hospital, where he was in guarded condition yesterday.

In addition, a woman was rescued by firefighters through a second-story window. After everyone who escaped from the house gathered outside, they were unsure whether anyone was left inside because partygoers had gone to sleep at different times of the night. Firefighters walked through the house twice before they found Evans' remains upstairs, said Evans' roommate Noah Singer.

The Rev. Paul Donlan, a chaplain, was allowed by firefighters to enter the charred and crumbling building to pray over Evans' body before the coroner arrived. Evans was lying face down in a rear room full of ashes and debris, Donlan said. "I suspect he was asleep and never woke up," he said.

The Alameda County coroner will conduct an autopsy today. The fire, reported at 7:12 a.m., gutted the house in the Rockridge neighborhood where five friends, students and recent graduates of the University of California at Berkeley, were living.

The tragedy followed a night of celebration. Two of the home's residents had graduated in December and were planning to travel to Europe, so two dozen friends held a farewell party at the home Saturday. Evans spent the night afterward.

Yesterday morning, Willie Decker, 22, said he had been asleep in his second- story bedroom when he heard his roommate Mike Bise, a former lifeguard, shouting "Fire! Fire!"

Decker did not hear a smoke alarm, he said. "The sound of the fire itself was totally overwhelming," he said. The hallways were blocked with smoke and flames, so Decker hung out the window and dropped to the ground.

The sound of screams from the burning house awakened across-the-street neighbors Bert Verrips and Karen Johnson.

"At first, I thought the party was still going on," said Johnson. When they saw smoke, they dragged a ladder from their garage and helped a man climb down from the roof.

Authorities were still investigating the cause of the fire, but Oakland Fire Department Capt. Vicky Evans-Robinson said it probably had started in the living room. The fire was brought under control at 7:52 a.m. by 28 firefighters.

Evans was planning to graduate in May, said friends of the psychology major from Newport Beach. They described him as friendly with a mop of curly hair, and a cyclist with a talent for music. He played bass for a band called Fillup Phil, Singer said.

"We were planning on recording an album and touring," Singer said. "All I can tell you is he was like a brother to me."

According to property records, the eight-bedroom house was built in 1914 and is owned by Frederick and Kathleen Morse of Oakland.

Firefighters did not confirm that the house had smoke detectors, but Kathleen Morse, reached by phone at home, said the house was equipped with the safety devices. She said that students even signed a form confirming the presence of smoke detectors before they moved in.

"We're just in shock," she said. "It's a tragedy."

Yesterday's fire was the second to claim the life of a UC Berkeley senior this school year. On Aug. 20, 1999, 21-year-old Azalea Jusay and her parents, Francisco and Florita Jusay, perished in afire in a rented Berkeley home on Martin Luther King Jr. Way.

Jusay's brother, 20, filed a lawsuit earlier this month accusing the building's owners of negligence because investigators found no trace of smoke detectors in the house.

 

Bradley Evans - Obituary
SF Chronicle
Henry K. Lee
Tuesday, January 30, 2001

Oakland -- A memorial service will be held Friday in Orange County for Bradley Evans, a University of California at Berkeley student who was killed in an Oakland house fire. He was 23.

He died from burns and smoke inhalation as a result of a fire that broke out inside a home at 5247 Desmond St. about 7:15 a.m. Sunday, authorities said.

Mr. Evans, of Berkeley, was a senior at UC Berkeley who was majoring in psychology. He graduated in 1996 from Corona del Mar High School in Orange County.

Mr. Evans worked at Zachary's Pizza in Berkeley. He had also worked for the UC Berkeley Police Department as a community service officer, providing night escort services for students.

"He was really a great, caring guy," said David Fruchbom, 23, of Los Angeles, who went to high school with Evans. "He was an incredible person."

Mr. Evans was an avid cyclist who played bass for a band called Fillup Phil, friends said.

Another former high school classmate, recent UC Berkeley graduate Brent Steele, 23, was injured in the blaze. He was in guarded but stable condition yesterday at Highland Hospital in

Oakland. Four other people who were inside the home at the time escaped with minor injuries.

In a statement yesterday, UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Berdahl said he was saddened by Mr. Evans' death.

"This is such very tragic news," he said. "Our prayers are with

Bradley Evans' family and friends. Such a loss is so hard for us all to comprehend, but we are enormously grateful that Oakland firefighters and neighbors responded so quickly and that the others in the house escaped grave injury."

A memorial service has been scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Friday at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach in Orange County. Flags at UC Berkeley will be lowered on Friday in honor of Mr. Evans, according to university officials.

 

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Daily Californian
(U. C. Berkeley Campus Newspaper)
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UC Student Perishes In House Fire, 4 Others Treated Student is second to die in building fires since august
 
A UC Berkeley student died early Sunday morning in an Oakland house fire that left several other students hospitalized, officials said.
 
At least four other UC Berkeley students or graduates were hospitalized and treated for smoke inhalation after a fire torched a house in the Rockridge neigborhood, according to wire reports. Seven students lived at the 5247 Desmond St. residence.
 
23-year-old Bradley Phillip Evans was found dead in the house between 7:10 a.m., when the fire was first reported, and 7:56 a.m., when the fire was brought under control, reports said.
The source of the fire still remains under investigation, and a county coronor's office spokesperson said late last night that the cause of Evans's death had not yet been determined.
 
According to Oakland police log reports, the fire was reported to police at 7:12 a.m. and the Oakland fire department responded soon afterward, a dispatcher said.
 
The house residents who survived the blaze were transported and treated at either Highland or Summit hospitals in Oakland.
Evans's permanent residence is in Newport Beach, Orange County, said the coronor's office spokesperson. No other information on Evans was
immediately available.
 
Yesterday's death marks the second time a UC Berkeley student has died in a house fire since last summer, when a UC Berkeley senior and her parents were killed in a Berkeley apartment blaze.
 
Azalea Jusay and her parents Francisco and Florita died Aug. 20 when a box left on a heater caught fire in Jusay's aparment. Her building did
not have operating smoke detectors and second-story windows were allegedly sealed shut.
 
UC Berkeley student William Decker survived yesterday's fire by jumping from a second-story window to escape the flames. One other student was helped out of the house by ladder, according to reports.
 
Decker said yesterday's fire began while house residents were sleeping after a party the night before. "Someone started yelling, 'Fire!'," said Decker, who was hospitalized and later released.
He added that Evans did not live in the house and was "just crashing there." Grace Fisher, a witness to the fire who lives on Desmond St., said yesterday that the entire house where Evans died was engulfed in flames. "It was an enormous fire, and it burned for about half an hour," she said.
 
Still stunned by the blaze, Decker recalled Evans was well-liked by his peers. He said Evans was an employee at the local Zachary's pizza restaurant.
Damage to the burned house is estimated to be more than $500,000.
 
 
 
Daily Californian
(U. C. Berkeley Campus Newspaper)
 
Family, Friends Mourn Loss of UC Berkeley Student to Fire
 
Authorities Continue Investigating Cause of Blaze
Daily Cal Staff/Soummya Datta
Thursday, February 8, 2001
 
 FLOWERS AND NOTES placed by friends of the fire victims mark the charred property on 5237 Desmond St., where a UC Berkeley student died.
 
 
Andrea O'Brien
January 30, 2001

Friends and relatives of the UC Berkeley student killed in a fire Sunday morning are mourning the loss of a person they remember as "gracious and friendly."

Bradley Phillips Evans, 23, was found dead in the house at approximately 7 a.m. Sunday after a blaze swept through the 5247 Desmond St. residence, injuring several other students.

Brent Steele, who graduated from UC Berkeley last fall, was also injured in the fire and remains in stable condition at Highland Hospital, officials said yesterday.

Oakland police Capt. Vicky Evans-Robinson said the cause of the fire is still under investigation, and officials do not know why Evans was not able to escape from the fire.

She added that the fire department does not currently know whether the house had working smoke detectors.

Dan Apperson, a county coroner's spokesperson, said Evans died of thermal burns and smoke inhalation. Officials contacted his father, Paul Evans.

The fire was reported at 7:12 a.m. Sunday to the Oakland Police Department, and the Oakland Fire Department responded soon after,Evans-Robinson said.

Six residents were at home when the fire started, Evans-Robinson said.

She said four people were transported and treated at either Highland or Summit hospitals in Oakland. Two other residents suffered from minor smoke inhalation but refused treatment.

Another UC Berkeley student, William Decker, escaped the fire by jumping from a second-story window.

Evans, a senior psychology major, did not live in the house and was "just crashing there" after a party the night before, Decker said.

As people left flowers outside of the residence, friends of the fire victims and one of the seven roommates living in the house removed charred possessions from the house yesterday.

"He was the sweetest guy I've ever met," said a friend of Evans from his hometown, Newport Beach, Calif., who wished to remain anonymous. "He'll be missed by everyone."

Evans worked for the UCPD as a community service officer, providing night security and other safety services.

On campus and at home in Newport Beach, people who knew him mourned for Evans this weekend.

"It's really hard to say because I think when a person dies, people say they were the best person, but genuinely, he was," said Leandra Schuler, a co-worker at Zachary's Chicago Pizza in Berkeley where Evans worked for almost two years. "He was so nice and kind and generous." "He was just ultra, super-friendly, and we loved him very, very much," Schuler said. "He's like the kind of person that when you're around him, he makes you want to be a better person."

The fire was the second blaze to claim the life of a UC Berkeley student this year.

Azalea Jusay, a UC Berkeley senior, and her parents Francisco and Florita died Aug. 20 when a moving box left on top of a heater caught fire, which swept through the house as they slept.

The building did not have operating smoke detectors, and the family was unable to escape because the second-story windows were sealed shut, said Berkeley fire officials in August.

"This is such very tragic news," said UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Berdahl. "Our prayers are with Bradley Evans's family and friends. Such a loss is so hard for us all to comprehend, but we are enormously grateful that Oakland firefighters and neighbors responded so quickly and that the others in the house escaped grave injury."

UC Berkeley's flags will be lowered on Friday to honor Evans.

Brian Bishop, manager of Zachary's Pizza, said about 30 co-workers gathered on Sunday to remember Evans.

"When someone dies, everyone says how full of life and energetic they were, and it all sounds so cliche," Bishop said. "But I've been reflecting over those thoughts and I think people in our situation are without alternatives to say other things, except that they're all true."

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