Blaze destroys Windermere mansion
House was under construction, unoccupied, officials say
WINDERMERE, Fla. – A 7,000-square-foot, $2.4 million Windermere mansion was destroyed Thursday night in a fire.
Fire investigators are looking into what sparked the massive blaze in the 12000 block of Water Point Boulevard in the Waterford Point subdivision -- a gated community just south of State Road 429.
SLIDESHOW: House fire
"It started in the back room overlooking the lake," said Katrina Godlewski, who was one of the first people to spot the flames.
She said in just a few snaps of her camera, the flames engulfed and then destroyed the second floor.
"I think the most terrifying thing was seeing how quickly it spread through the house and knowing that could be you in your house and you only have seconds to get out," said Godlewski.
The fire was so large, neighbors were worried that the flames might spread to their house.
David Zeckser watched as fire tore through his future house, baffled as to why it started. He said he left around 1 p.m. and construction crews left around 3 p.m. The fire started just before 6 p.m.
"I have no idea what happened," said Zeckser. "There was nothing flammable in the structure, nothing electric, no wiring, no plumbing, nothing."
Once finished, the six-bedroom, six-bath house was estimated to be worth roughly $2.4 million. Even though he'll have to start over, he said he plans to rebuild.
Zeckser said he was building his wife a dream home and now, he has find a way to tell her it's gone.
"She's out of the country on a trip," he said. "So I've got that to do (on Friday)."
Firefighters were hesitant to call the fire suspicious.
One firefighter suffered minor burns while battling the blaze.
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