NEW HYDE PARK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — An early morning fire in Nassau County claimed the life of a 68-year-old woman and her 4-year-old granddaughter.
It took hundreds of firefighters more than an hour to bring the flames under control, CBS2’s Aundrea Cline-Thomas reported Sunday.
It only took minutes for the flames to fully engulf the home on North 12th Street in New Hyde Park. A 10-year-old boy jumped out of a window onto a car parked in the driveway.
“We were outside and he was running out from the side and one of the neighbor brought him here,” neighbor Shaju Sam said.
Sam looked after the child until first responders arrived.
“He was crying, basically, and we saw there was some kind of bruise on his elbow and some burning,” Sam said.
“We just know that they were watching their grandkids. That’s what I know,” close family friend Chester Sloma said. “They’re such a wonderful family, such a beautiful family.”
The fire was so bad, the first crews that responded had to call for back up. When the blaze reached its height, 200 firefighters were on the scene, CBS2’s Cline-Thomas reported.
“I thought it was actually going to spread to other houses, it was so bad. We were a little concerned, but finally the firefighters got it under control,” neighbor Ernest Garvey said.
More than an hour later, the fire was out. The arson and bomb squads, along with the fire marshal, moved in. For Sloma, it was all hard to watch.
“I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. I’m just going to pray for them. That’s all,” Sloma said.
The house, now filled with charred debris, only begins to describe the heartache.
Detectives said the fire was not criminal in nature, but the cause remains under investigation.