‘Like a bomb’: Neighbors recount West Chester fire that critically hurt 4 kids

Published: Sep. 20, 2022 at 9:47 PM EDT
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UPDATE: Two of the four young children critically hurt in a West Chester fire last weekend have died, according to the Hamilton County Coroner’s Office.

WEST CHESTER, Ohio (WXIX) - There was no adult in the West Chester apartment where a fire broke out and critically injured four children last Saturday, police say.

The children—ages 8, 5, 1 and 9 months—remain in critical condition at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

A neighbor who prefers to remain anonymous says the kids’ mother was outside nearby when the fire began.

“It was so scary that I was crying,” the neighbor said Tuesday. “I was afraid that my house was going to burn down.”

It happened on Aster Park Drive around 12:20 p.m. Saturday. West Chester firefighters arrived to see smoke emerging from the windows.

The anonymous neighbor’s son explains what happened next.

“And then my mom heard like a bomb explode, and then we went out and see the smoke and fire,” he said.

Firefighters successfully rescued the children but not before they experienced severe smoke inhalation.

MORE | Police release 911 calls from West Chester fire that left 4 children in critical condition

“The mom was here, and then she said, ‘My babies are there, my babies are there,’” the boy said.

The kids’ mother has been with them at the hospital since the fire.

The boy confesses to having nightmares afterward. “I was dreaming that the kids were screaming in my dreams.”

He says he is praying for their recovery.

The cause of the fire remains undetermined, according to the Ohio State Fire Marshall.

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