AKRON, Ohio — Five people were killed in a house fire in Akron overnight, according to The Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Two adults and three children were killed in a house fire in the 1100 block of Linden Avenue, located in Akron’s North Hill neighborhood.
“This is a tragedy for our community, our fire department, and especially this family. We saw the strength and courage of our firefighters as they worked hard to find and rescue victims, and their compassion in assisting the family and neighbors. We appreciate the strength of the community as we have seen such support for this family," Akron fire chief Clarence Tucker said.
When firefighters arrived at approximately 1 a.m. Monday, the house was fully engulfed.
"Well, it was, like I said, fully engulfed. We did have some damage to the houses next door, we did get it under control in a fair amount of time but unfortunately again we do have tragedies,” said Lt. Sierjie Lash, of the Akron Fire Department.
A News 5 reporter spoke to Yam Subba, who identified himself as the son of one of the victims. He drove up from Columbus after hearing the news. The coronavirus pandemic kept him away from his family for over a year.
Subba told News 5 that his dad, stepmother and two sisters were among those killed in the house fire.
He shared the below photo of his family members who died early Monday.
Subba said he is in shock at the news.
"I don't know how this happened. It's really sad," Subba said.
Fire officials said in addition to the five people who died inside the home, four others were taken to nearby hospitals, including three adults and one child. Those individuals were treated for burns and smoke inhalation.
A neighbor who had her window open heard screaming and called 911.
“My bedroom window was open and I heard screaming and I looked out the window and saw the flames and I ran in the living room and dialed 911…yelled at my kids to get out of the house,” said Jean Hudson, a neighbor.
Mark Williamson, a spokesperson for Akron Public Schools, said the children killed in the house fire were students at Legget Elementary, Jennings Middle School and North High School.
Williamson released the following statement on behalf of Christine Fowler Mack, of Akron Public Schools:
“Early this morning we were informed of a fire that has taken the lives of three children. Three Akron Public Schools students. We cannot express our shared grief, in words. Our best efforts now are focused on connecting with our students and staff who will be affected by this. Grief counselors have been mobilized now and are where they need to be to help our district through this tragedy."
“My family, the Akron Fire Department, and the entire Akron community, are profoundly saddened by this devastating incident. My deepest sympathies and prayers are with the family members of those who lost their lives, as we continue to pray for strength and healing for the survivors being treated. We will see to it that the survivors and the victims’ family are supported in this time of great sorrow and need. I want to thank the Akron Fire Department for their bravery in responding to this fire and for their attempts to rescue those trapped inside,” said Akron mayor Dan Horrigan.
A spokesperson with Akron Fire said the cause and determination of the fire remains under investigation as Akron Fire’s Investigative Bureau works with the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Office.
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