Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 6.22.15 AMChicago WLS ABC 7 News

“Four children were killed in a fire in Chicago’s Roseland neighborhood. Several people were injured after jumping from the apartment building on the Far South Side.

The fire started in the 18-unit complex in the 11200-block of South Vernon Avenue just before 3:30 a.m. Monday.

Albert Miller was asleep in his second floor apartment when he woke up to his dog barking and his girlfriend saying they had to get out of the building. They could see flames outside their window. Miller yelled to his neighbors to try and get them out as well. As Miller came out the front door, he saw two people jump from the floor above him.

“As I was coming out the front door, two people came flying out the window. A lady and a man hit the ground,” Miller said. “I tried to get them, but the fire was just too bad.”

Two adults were taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn after they jumped from the third floor. They are listed in critical condition. 

Four children were killed in the blaze. Neighbors said they were a 6-year-old girl, a 16-year-old girl and two boys, between the ages of 11 and 13. Officials have not released the victims’ ages or genders.

They were found in the front bedroom of an apartment on the second floor. Fire officials said the fire appears to have started on that floor.

Miller said he didn’t know the four children well, but often saw them playing outside. 

“We just had a little get together with everyone in the building and the kids were having a good time – they were having a good time out there,” Miller said. “I didn’t know them like that, but I saw them all the time.”

“The kids would come over and play. I’d do the little girl’s hair,” building resident Nikita McCarter said. “The little boy, he’d speak to me every day when they’d walk to school. That’s just sad. I can’t believe this. This is just shocking right now.”

They blaze was struck out by 4:30 a.m. Monday. At least 50 people have been displaced from the courtyard building, built in 1921. 

“I just pray that everybody’s alright,” Miller said. “I just keep their kids in my prayers. I just hope that we just learn from this mistake and don’t let it happen anymore.” 

Emergency crews were still on the scene as of 5:30 a.m. Monday. Martin Luther King Drive is closed between 113th Street and 111th Street. 

The cause of the fire is under investigation.”


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