Family: Westport native among victims of CA warehouse fire
A Westport native was killed in the massive warehouse fire that has claimed the lives of 36 people in Oakland, California.
Riley Fritz, who also went by the name Feral Pines, was among those who perished in the fire, according to her family.
Her father, Bruce Fritz, says he already feared the worst when the news broke over the weekend that dozens were dead in the blaze. She had been unaccounted for and wasn't answering texts or phone messages.
Bruce Fritz says the family received a call from the coroner's office Sunday night, and now he must identify the remains of his child.
A graduate of Staples High School who loved art and music, she moved to Oakland a few months ago, and her family says she was truly happy for the first time in her life.
"She was an amazingly kind and beautiful person who had the strength to be her true self, even when she knew that was not going to be an easy path," says Amanda Parry, the victim's sister.
Investigators in California say flames ripped through the building, known as the "Ghost Ship," during a dance party Friday night.
The cluttered warehouse had been converted to artists' studios and illegal living spaces, according to officials.
Funeral arrangements for Fritz have not yet been announced.