Three children and seven adults have been confirmed dead in a house fire that a firefighter who is the grandfather of the victims heartbreakingly responded to.
A blaze started around 2.30am on Friday at a home in Nescopeck in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, according to WGAL.
Four people made it out of the burning home alive, but 10 others died. A ‘complex criminal investigation’ is underway, according to state police.
Among the firefighters who responded to the scene was Harold Baker, the grandfather of one of the victims.
‘I couldn’t get in there to save them. That is the biggest thing that has been on me,’ he said. ‘I couldn’t get in there to save them.’
Baker, who serves on the Nescopeck Volunteer Fire Company, told local media: ‘The address that they gave us was the neighbor’s address. It was right next door to them… When we turned the corner up here on Dewey (Street) I knew right away what house it was just by looking down the street.
‘I was on the first engine, and when we pulled up the whole place was fully involved. We tried to get into them. There wasn’t no way we could get into them.
‘We pulled up and the whole place was fully involved… We tried to get into them but there was no way.
‘I lost my son, my daughter, grandson, two other grandkids in there, my father-in-law, my brother-in-law, and my sister-in-law. All lost.’
The deceased children include a 5-year-old boy, a 6-year-old boy and a 7-year-old girl. The adult victims have been identified as Dale Backer, 19, Star Backer, 22, Laura Daubert, 48, Shannon Daubert, 44, David Daubert Senior, 79, and Marian Slusser, 54, according to the Daily Mail.
A GoFundMe page set up by the Nescopeck mayor’s daughter, Robin Massina, states that she spoke with the surviving family members and would provide updates as they make contact.
‘We all awoke this morning to the tragic news of the house fire in our beloved little town with multiple people unaccounted for,’ wrote Massina. ‘Pets were lost as well as all the family’s possessions.’
The cause of the fire was not immediately clear.
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