A pensioner has been found alive and well in a care home – five days after a fire tore through the rest of the building.
The 74-year-old man was sitting in his apartment in the Washington DC complex and is expected to survive.
He was found by a team assessing the damage to the four-storey retirement block, which had been home to more than 100 elderly people.
Mayor Muriel Bowser said: “The resident was found by crews hired by the building owners to evaluate the safety of the structure.
“It appears that, based on the report that I got from the building workers, that he was sitting in his apartment.”
The man shouted when he heard investigators outside but was found sitting calmly inside after the door was prised open.
One rescuer said: “And he wanted to walk out, but we put him in a chair. For someone who has been in that situation for as long as he has, he seemed in incredibly good shape.”
Washington fire chief Gregory Dean said fire crews who checked the apartments for anyone left behind “may have missed the apartment” during the evacuation.
The mayor has announced an investigation into the incident and said more searches of the building would take place.
She said he had been “accounted for” at the time of the evacuation.
The fire was reported last Wednesday afternoon and took resources from several fire stations to tackle.
More than 100 marines also came from nearby barracks to assist in rescue attempts.
Many of the residents in the home were wheelchair or bedbound, and firefighters reported ceilings collapsing around them as they battled the blaze.
A statement from the fire department on 19 September said: “The rescue effort included at least one resident who had to be assisted down a portable ladder from the fourth floor by a lone firefighter.
“Eventually all residents were safely removed from the building, and the extent and severity of the blaze forced firefighters to evacuate and switch to a defensive exterior attack, using large diameter streams from aerial apparatus and other sources.
“Despite the potential for casualties, there were only 6 non life threatening EMS transports of civilians, and no firefighter injuries.”
The fire took several hours to tackle before it died down.