EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSFamily Members, Firefighters Urge Smoke Alarms After Fatal Fire
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Kera Mashek
Web Producer: Bethany Simmons
Also Contributing: Katelyn Sykes
Reported: Oct. 21, 2013 7:39 AM EDT
Updated: Oct. 22, 2013 10:16 AM EDT
Logan , Logan County , West Virginia
At just three and four years old, Dontarius Gardner and Shania Sidney barely got their lives started, but family and friends say they were good, sweet kids. And in light of what's happened--they, along with the firefighting community, are hoping there's a lesson to be learned to prevent something like this from happening again.
Nearly every inch of the Logan duplex is scorched after Monday morning's fire, but with two children who didn't make it out alive, the emotional damage of what happened is far worse.
At just 7 and 10, two young girls have lost cousins and close friends..
"I've cried mostly, and I'm really going to miss those guys," said Tracsette Elmore, cousin of the victims.
"I would always come from school and go in there and do homework, and when I'd come back out, they would love to play with me in that red truck and play tag, jump rope, basketball and stuff," said Laila Williams, cousin of the victims.
And as much as they enjoyed being around them, the cousins say Dontarius and Shania were each other's best friend.
"They would hug each other and love on each other. They were so nice and I loved them," said Williams.
Certainly there's a lot of heartache when something like this happens, when you stop and think about two kids, ages three and four not being able to do something as simple as ride their tricycle ever again. But fire officials hope out of this tragedy, there is a wake up call.
"People really need to take a look at smoke alarms. You know, fire doesn't discriminate young or old, rich or poor, it's a killer. Six or seven dollars for a smoke alarms in your house is a small price to pay to ensure the safety of your kids, and you really need to discuss with your kids what to do itf there's a fire in the house. If this doesn't wake people up, I don't know what will," said Logan Fire Chief Scott Beckett.
It's a message already hitting home with two little girls.
"I just hope families will get smoke detectors and just be safe," Williams said.
Most fire departments will help you get and install a smoke alarm if you cannot afford it.
Family members have identified the two children killed in a Logan fire.
Dontarius Gardner, 3, and Shania Sidney, 4, died in the blaze that was reported about 5 a.m. Monday at a residence off Canton Lane in Logan, family members said.
The American Red Cross is putting the mother up in a local hotel.
Authorities in Logan said two young children died in a house fire.
Fire Chief Scott Beckett told media outlets the fire was reported about 5 a.m. Monday at the home in Logan. The children were ages 3 and 4.
Beckett said adults on both sides of the duplex-style home escaped unharmed.
He said no working smoke detectors were found inside the home and the cause of the fire is under investigation.
Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Two young children are dead after a fire ripped through their home in Logan, trapping them inside.
Eric Carter, a family member of Monday's fire victims, said the loss is devastating.
"There are two kids (involved)," Carter said.
Carter is trying to come to terms with Monday morning's deadly fire in Logan. He said two of his cousin's wife's kids were trapped inside the home on Canton Lane when a fire broke out and they were killed.
"We lost some loved ones, and we want everyone to pray for us," Carter said.
Carter was staying next door and said another family member came running over to his home, screaming that there was a fire.
"There was nothing we could do," Carter said. "The fire department, the police and everybody tried to do the best they could do to try to get them out."
Fire officials said the single-story duplex on Canton Lane was fully involved when they arrived at the scene about 5 a.m. A white sheet was hanging in what used to be a window of the room where those two kids, under the age of 8, were sleeping.
"It's not easy," Logan Fire Department Chief Scott Beckett said. "Most of us have kids right around this age. It's just one of those things -- at the end of the day, you go home and hug your kids a little bit tighter, tell them you love them and try to do the best you can do on this job and that's our goal."
While the investigation into this deadly fire is under way, Carter said, it's important for people to be careful during these upcoming winter months and to make sure their kids and family members are safe.
"Because I love my family," Carter said.
As Carter and his family try to make sense of this tragedy, he said, it is important to let those who mean the most to you know how much you care.
"You never know when it's going to be your last day and always let somebody know that you love them," he said.
Family members think a heater in the room the kids were sleeping in could be to blame for the fire.
The West Virginia State Fire Marshal's Office is investigating.
Two children died in an early morning house fire Monday in Logan.
Eyewitness News is told two small children under the ages of 8 were killed.
The blaze was reported about 5 a.m. at a duplex off of Canton Lane in Logan. Firefighters said everyone else was able to make it out of the building safely.
The state fire marshals are investigating the cause of the blaze.
Eyewitness News Reporter Katelyn Sykes is at the scene. Follow her on Twitter for the latest updates from the scene and keep checking wchstv.com for updates.
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