Boy, 12, dies after last week's Pasadena house fire

The boy's brother got out safely, but it was too late to save the 12-year-old, who had Down syndrome. Now his family's in mourning
November 14, 2013 8:25:52 PM PST
A 12-year-old boy caught in a house fire has died.

It happened in the 1100 block of Austin Street in Pasadena last week.

The damage is so severe, the Gibsons can't return to their home, and they also must go on living without the youngest member of their family, 12-year-old Jacob Gibson.

Teddy bears and balloons in front of the burned-out Pasadena home are the way neighbors show they are with the Gibsons.

"If you were sad, he would always bring a smile to your face," neighbor Andrea Mireles said.

And they're holding fundraisers for the family of six because so much has changed in just a week.

"It's heart wrenching. He was our life," said Cheri Gibson, the boy's mother.

Josh and Jacob Gibson were the only two home last Thursday at their Austin Street home.

"I took two deep breaths and I couldn't breathe so I got out and so I kept screaming, 'My brother's in there, my brother is in there. Please get him out!" Josh Gibson said.

Jacob had Down syndrome but the family had their own way of communicating with him.

"So energetic, so happy all the time. He loved people, he loved everybody, he loved to play. He was just always in good spirits," Jacob's father, Donald Gibson, said.

Josh survived with minor injuries, but without his brother, its his heart that's hurting the most.

"I didn't get him out and that's one of the main things that's really been killing me inside. That boy was my life, he everything to me," he said.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but the fire marshal has ruled it as accidental.

Find Christine on Facebook at ABC13ChristineDobbyn or on Twitter at @christinedobbyn

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