Despite desperate rescue attempt, 10-year-old and 3-year-old killed in South Philly fire

A house fire was reported at 1 a.m. on Nov. 21, 2020 in the Grays Ferry section of South Philadelphia. (NBC10)

A house fire was reported at 1 a.m. on Nov. 21, 2020 in the Grays Ferry section of South Philadelphia. (NBC10)

This article originally appeared on NBC10.

Despite rescue efforts by Philadelphia firefighters and desperate neighbors, two children were killed in a rowhome fire in Philadelphia’s Grays Ferry neighborhood early Saturday.

The fire was reported at about 1:15 a.m. Saturday at a home in the 1500 block of South 30th Street. Firefighters responded within two minutes, but the row home was consumed by fire when they arrived.

Fire crews rescued two people from the home, but one of those rescued, a ten-year-old girl with severe burns, died at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Firefighters found another child, a three-year-old boy, dead inside the home.

Four people are still hospitalized: One man who is in critical condition with soot and smoke inhalation; and a 24-year-old woman with burns and a 30-year-old man with burns and smoke inhalation, both of whom are in stable condition.

Neighbors said a family — two parents and several young children — had lived in the home for about a year. The children were frequently seen playing on the street.

Officials haven’t released the identities of the victims yet.

One of the neighbors said her son helped in the rescue. “My son had the mother, in his arms, literally, carrying her across the street from her house,” said Naukel Barnes. “He sat her down on the step next to me and went to go run to see if he could go through the back.”

But flames shot through the back of the home. “There was no way for us to get inside at all,” Barnes said.

It’s not yet known if the home had working smoke detectors.

“It’s really important to have smoke alarms in your home, on every floor,” said Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel at the scene. “Please help us help you. Remember that fire is everyone’s fight.”

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