Four children are dead and others are injured after a fire in Clay County.
Clay County Ambulance Service confirms the four victims were a six-month-old boy, and three girls, ages four, five and eight.
The fire was reported around 11:45 p.m. on the 600 block of Main Street in the town of Clay.
The State Fire Marshals’ Office says that four children are dead as a result of the blaze. Four others, including two adults two children , including a two-year-old boy, were able to escape from the blaze with minor injuries.
According to the WV DHHR, all four children killed were foster children.
“Today was a tragic event for four young foster children,” said Linda Watts, Commissioner for DHHR’s Bureau for Children and Families. “We are truly saddened by the loss experienced.”
The Clay Volunteer Fire Department, Lizemore Volunteer Fire Department, State Police and Clay County Ambulance Service initially responded to the scene.
Clay County Ambulance Service EMT, Leilani Tucker said, “it’s hard for us to go through that, see that. We have children, grandchildren that are about the same sage. I know in this job, we see all kinds of things and a lot of time we try to hold it together, and sometimes you just can’t.”
The State Fire Marshals’ Office is investigating the cause of the blaze and is also at the scene along with Otter Creek Volunteer Fire Department to relieve other crew members. They say the fire is not suspicious.
There were working smoke alarms in the home.
“We are absolutely devastated and heartbroken after finding out about this horrific fire earlier today that claimed the lives of four of our beautiful West Virginia children in Clay County,” remarked Governor Jim Justice and his wife, Cathy, in a joint statement. “Please join us as we pray for these young people and their families. It absolutely breaks our hearts that these children also had to endure the hardship of becoming foster children. This is an absolute tragedy.”
A donation page has been setup through Facebook to help the family members dealing with great loss. If you’d like to donate materialistic items, search for the group “Clay County Mud Runners” on Facebook where they’vw provided drop off locations for clothes, home supplies and non-perishiable food.” Clay County Bank is also accepting monetary donations to help out family members.
A vigil is set to take place tomorrow night at 6 at the new courthouse in Clay, in rememberance of the four children that were lost.
We will have much more on this continuing story as soon as we receive new information.