William Wilfong was killed along with four of his children in a fire that began early Wednesday morning in Pike County, Kentucky.
13News spoke with James Tucker. "We're heartbroken. Our hearts are crushed today," said Tucker. He's the grandfather of the four children and father to Wilfong's girlfriend, Tammie Tucker.
The children's names are Dakota, Tyler, Cheyenne and Emily. Their mother, Tammie Tucker, was severely burned in the fire. James Tucker said that he was awakened at about 2:30 a.m. when his daughter was knocking on his door. He said she was begging for help and had burns on her hands and arms. She was flown to the University of Kentucky Medical Center where she is listed in critical condition.
James Tucker described the scene at the home as flames consumed the house.
"When I opened the curtain up and looked out the window, I saw the whole house was on fire," said Mr. Tucker.
"I had my shorts on I sleep in. I slipped my boots on, and run up through there, but couldn't get in the house to try to do nothing," said Tucker.
The county coroner confirmed that the children's bodies were found side by side in the same area of the home, their father nearby.
Authorities are still investigating the cause of the fire.
PIKEVILLE, Ky. -- An early morning blaze at a home in rural eastern Kentucky killed four children and an adult Wednesday.
Pike County Coroner Russell Roberts and Kentucky State Police Trooper Tony Watts confirmed the deaths to The Associated Press, but neither could give names or ages. Watts said one injured person was taken to the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington with injuries sustained in the fire.
Other media reported that the five dead were a father and four children, and that the children's mother was badly injured in the fire.
Watts said the fire began just after 2:30 a.m. Wednesday in the Jonancy community of Pike County.
Pike County Emergency Management Coordinator Doug Tackett said the fire happened in a rural area of Pike County, about three hours southeast of Lexington in the eastern coal field area of the state. Tackett said three fire departments responded to the fire, but he had no other information.
Firefighters at the scene of the small home were waiting for the remaining structure to cool off before going inside to investigate.
Darrell Compton, chief of the Shelby Valley Volunteer Fire Department, said the bodies of the victims remained inside the home late Wednesday morning.
"We're still doing the overhaul and the cooling of the structure to get in there and do that,'' Compton said.
Investigators with the state fire marshal's office were at the scene.
No officials could recall a similar deadly blaze in Kentucky since 10 people, including six children, were killed in a house fire in Bardstown in February 2007.
"It's probably been the worst we've had in this area in a long, long time,'' Watts said.
County Judge-Executive spokesman Brandon Roberts said there's been no similar fatal fire in the county in recent years.
"I can't remember a whole family perishing in a fire in my lifetime,'' Roberts said. "It's just, `Oh God.'''
Pike County fire officials are on the scene of a house fire on Elswick Branch Road in the Jonancy area that broke out around 2:30 a.m.
According to the Pike County Firefighters Association, four children, ages 5, 4, 2 and 6 months, along with their father, were killed in the fire.
The children's mother was flown to a hospital.
No other information is being released at this time. No word on what started the fire.
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