On Thursday evening, December 28th, an apartment building fire in the Bronx tragically claimed the life of 12 people in New York City. Several others were injured, some suffering critical injuries.
The fire, which was caused by a young boy playing with the stove on the first floor, was described as the “worst fire in New York City in more than 25 years.” The child who started the fire and his family were able to exit their apartment in time, but the fire spread quickly up the stairs and around the building after they left their door open.
Over New Year’s weekend, the identity of all 12 victims was released to the public.
Four family members
37-year-old Karen Francis and her two young children; 2-year-old Kylie Francis and 7-year-old Kelesha Francis died in the fire. Karen’s niece, 19-year-old Shawntay Young, also did not survive the fire, reported Pix11. Unfortunately, Karen’s husband, Hold Francis, was hospitalized and is currently on life support.
An infant and her grandmother
The youngest victim was determined to be 8-month-old Amora Batiz. Her grandma, 58-year-old Maria Batiz, was the oldest victim.
Maria was babysitting Amora at the time of the incident; the mother of the baby, Christine Batiz, was at work when the fire occurred. Christine is mourning the loss of the two most important people in her life.
A National Guard soldier
28-year-old Emmanuel Mensah was home for the holidays when he sadly passed away in the Bronx fire, according to Business Insider. He died helping others in the building escape from the fire.
The remaining five victims have been identified as 48-year-old Gabriel Yaw Sarkookie, 54-year-old Justice Opoku, 49-year-old Solomon Donkor, 17-year-old Hannah Donkor, and William Donkor (age unknown), reported NBC News.
On Tuesday morning, news broke that another inferno hit the Bronx, injuring several people including children. Read the details here.
Please continue to pray for the families impacted by this tragedy. In more uplifting news, a country music star revealed that she renewed vows with her husband years after their separation announcement.