Vacant funeral home in Bedford Park goes up in flames

A former funeral home on E. 198th Street in Bedford Park went up in flames Thursday, damaging neighboring buildings and injuring dozens.

The fire started in the morning at the former Ortez Funeral Home, a building residents say had become a place for drug activity and squatters. Fire officials say one family living next to the three-story building has been put up by the Red Cross while area business owners try to figure out if they can remain open.

Sixteen firefighters and three residents suffered minor injuries. Fire marshals will remain at the scene to try and determine how the fire started.

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