Mildred Maria Harrison killed in Southeast apartment fire

A woman was killed early Wednesday morning after her Southeast D.C. apartment caught fire, officials say.

The fire apparently started in the kitchen of{ }the woman's home, located in the 1600 block of 17th Street, at about 1:30a.m. Wednesday.

Fire officials say witnesses called 911 to report that the woman was engulfed in flames. Firefighters and neighbors said the fire was intense.

They say the woman, identified as 71-year-old Mildred Maria Harrison, was already dead when firefighters arrived. The cause of the fire is unknown, officials say. The investigation is ongoing.

Neighbors tell ABC7 News that power went out in the building around 8 p.m. Tuesday night. They say Pepco crews were working on power lines down the street and, about 20 minutes later, power was restored.

Neighbors also say Harrison lived alone at the apartment building for many years, and has many relatives who live nearby. She was reportedly well-known and well-liked in the neighborhood, and loved to travel and listen to gospel music.

Neighbors tell ABC7 that everybody called her Miss Mildred. "Miss M" was on her D.C. license plate.

"Miss Mildred was a person that smiled all the time." says Jeannie Edwards. "Everybody knew her. everybody loved her. I did too. She called me her daughter."