Five Family Members Among 7 who Died in Lowell Apartment Fire
LOWELL, Mass. (AP) — A relative has identified five family members who died in a pre-dawn apartment fire that killed seven people in Massachusetts.
Thearan Sak says his brother, Torn Sak, and Torn’s longtime companion, Ellen Vuong, died, along with three of the couple’s children, a 7-year-old girl, a 9-year-old boy and a 12-year-old boy.
Sak said his brother’s other two sons managed to escape and survived.
Authorities have not confirmed the identities of the victims, including two other people who died in Thursday’s fire in Lowell.
Thearan Sak said when he arrived at his brother’s apartment, he saw only two of his nephews outside and was told later that the others had perished in the fire.
He said his brother kept fireworks in the apartment and enjoyed celebrating special events with them.
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LOWELL, Mass. (AP) — Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan is pledging to conduct what she expects to be a “long and thorough review” into a fire in Lowell that claimed seven lives.
Ryan said the pre-dawn blaze in an apartment building Thursday took the lives of four adults and three children. All the fatalities occurred in third-floor units. Lowell Fire Chief Edward Pitta says the victims died in the three-alarm fire reported just before 4 a.m.
Several people had to be rescued from upper floors. Nine people were hospitalized with injuries not considered life-threatening.
Ryan says it will be a “fairly long time before we have positive identifications” on the bodies.
The investigation will include whether the alarm system was working and whether there were fireworks in the building, as some witnesses described hearing explosions.
Ryan says investigators have already contacted building ownership.
A woman who answered the phone at a listing for the building’s owner, DK Ram LLC of Chelmsford, said no one was available to talk.
Authorities say 48 people lived in the building, which had businesses on the ground floor and apartments on the upper floors.
State Fire Marshal Stephen Coan says the cause remains under investigation.