2 children die after fire engulfs Galveston home

GALVESTON, Texas — Two children died after a fire broke out in their southeastern Texas home on Saturday, authorities said.

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According to Galveston Assistant Fire Chief Richie Pearson, more than 20 firefighters responded to the home at around 2:35 a.m. CDT, KPRC-TV reported.

A father and two children were inside the home, the television station reported. The children were both under 6 years old, according to the Houston Chronicle. Fire Chief Charles Olsen told reporters that the father woke up and saw heavy smoke, then ran out as soon as firefighters arrived. The man recruited neighbors to help rescue the children trapped inside. A neighbor told KPRC they tried to crawl through a bedroom window to rescue the children, but authorities told them it was too dangerous.

“(The neighbor) yelled, ‘Call for help the house is on fire. The kids are inside,’” Warren Mies, a Navy veteran, told the television station. “(We were) trying to get inside the window because we asked my neighbor, ‘What room are the kids in?’ He told us they were in the back bedroom.”

Firefighters pulled the two children out of the home’s back bedroom and they were taken to an area hospital, where they both died, KHOU-TV reported.

James Rodgers, whose home connects to the one that caught fire, told KTRK-TV that the children were his cousin and niece.

The mother of the children was not home at the time of the fire, KPRC reported.

The fire is under investigation by the Galveston Fire Marshal and officials have not yet determined the cause of the blaze, the Chronicle reported.