2 Children Killed In Grosse Pointe House Fire

"The whole place just exploded in flames. It was terrible."

WWJ News
October 28, 2019 - 1:59 pm

GROSSE POINTE (WWJ) - Two young boys have been killed in a house fire in Grosse Pointe.

The fire broke out Monday morning in a home on Fischer Road near Charlevoix, where witnesses said the children were trapped in a bedroom above the garage. 

"It just happened so quickly; you know, the whole thing," neighbor Sue Vogel told WWJ's Vickie Thomas. "From hearing glass breaking and people screaming, to the fire shooting out of the top of the house and all the firefighters doing everything they could. There had to be 30, 40 of them trying to get in." 

"I come running out, I'm hearing the screaming of mom, hearing screaming upstairs," Sue's husband, Bill Vogel, said. "Some guy broke open the front door and then the whole place just exploded in flames. It was terrible."

Firefighters found the boys incapacitated, trying to hide from the smoke. 

It's unclear what caused the fire. Authorities were not releasing any details as investigators remained on the scene into the afternoon.

While the victims are not being named at this time, officials say they were brothers who were in the 4th and 5th grade at Richard Elementary in Grosse Pointe Farms.

Grosse Pointe Farms City Councilman Neil Sroka wrote on Facebook: "My heart breaks for the family, friends, and all the kids at Richard Elementary who are mourning the loss of a classmate today. There's nothing anyone can say to make this kind of tragedy fathomable, but I hope all impacted receive the love, light, and support I know everyone in Grosse Pointe Farms is sending their way now and in the weeks, months, and years to come."

Grosse Pointe Schools Superintendent Gary Niehaus said school was in session at Richard Elementary Monday, although parents were welcome to pick up their kids if they chose to do so. He said he believed it should be up to parents to decide how to tell their children about the deaths, but that the school is sending home an informational packet with advice from mental health experts.

Niehaus said there would be crisis counselors available at the school on Tuesday.