Heritage (Monrovia)

9 July 2014

Liberia: Four Liberian-American Kids Die in Philadelphia Fire

Four Liberian-American children died early Saturday when fire gutted their home on the 6500 block of Gesner Street in Southwest Philadelphia, Pa.

The children were only identified as Patrick, 4, Taj, 1, and 4 year-old female twins- Mariama and Marie.

A family friend, who prefers anonymity, said Marie Bohai, 46, the single-mother of the twins was taking care of Patrick and Taj, whose mother, Eleanor Jacque, had gone out for the night.

The Liberia News Agency correspondent, who visited the tragic scene Saturday, said there were wailing and mourning among family members and friends of the victims.

The correspondent also said there were widespread speculations among bystanders that the fire might have been the result of fireworks by children in the neighborhood who were celebrating the Fourth of July, America's Independence Day.

Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Fire Department is investigating the cause of the fire which started at about 3:30 Saturday morning and rendered 40 other homeless from seven charred homes.

The victims are being provided humanitarian assistance by the American Red Cross.

Similar accident in 2008 claimed the lives of seven Liberians in the same Southwest Philadelphia community dominated by Liberian immigrants.

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