The Flathead County Sheriff's Office has identified the victim in the house explosion in Kalispell early this morning. 57-year-old John Parsons was killed in the explosion at 725 9th Avenue West.
"[I] opened up the door and came outside to a wall of flames," said neighbor Matthew Rathell.
Neighbors woke up startled and alarmed when they heard what sounded like fireworks and gunshots outside of the Kalispell home early Friday morning.
"I jumped out of bed," Rathell continued. "We thought a car hit our home cause it shook the house so violently."
"It reminded me of shotguns actually going off and I was ducking behind the truck every now and then but i had to keep on pulling the camera up to see what was going on," said neighbor Michael Lopez.
Lopez heard the explosion from his house a few blocks away and took video with his camera phone.
Kalispell police and firefighters responded and contained the explosion but ran into some dangerous obstacles.
"We had live ammunition that was discharging upon our arrival," explained Fire Chief Dave Dedman. "We had power lines down in the alley that were arcing, the gas meter had ruptured from the house, and we had live fire from there."
Firefighters stayed on scene throughout the morning as crews from Flathead Electric and Northwestern Energy worked on the gas and power lines that were destroyed in the blaze. The fire department says the house is a total loss.
The cause of the explosion is still under investigation. NBC Montana will bring you more details as soon as they become available.