Two adults, 2 children die in apartment fire

February 19, 2010 3:02:04 PM PST
Four people, including two young children, were found dead inside a burning apartment overnight. And now authorities are trying to determine how they died. The Houston Fire Department was called out to the Walnut Creek Apartments on Fallbrook near Green Plaza just before 2am.

"I was just as shocked as everybody else," said neighbor Charlotte Whitaker.

The damage looked minor, but it was anything but that. four people, including two small girls, just two and four years old, died there in a fire early this morning.

"They were like my grandkids," says Gracia Mende, who lives nearby and took care of the girls.

Residents all said the same thing about the the children killed in the tragic fire.

"The little girls were musicians. They loved to sing they'd be playing every morning," said Whitaker. "They were just good children."

Neighbors said they'd just seen the family awake a few hours earlier.

"My mom just came and woke me up and she told us that the next door neighbor, the house was on fire and then we just ran outside and we saw all these firemen," said resident Jose Bonilla.

There was only light smoke when firefighters got here, but inside there was a devastating discovery.

"Upon forcing entry, they came upon two victims, and during their initial search they also found two more victims," said Chief Kevin Alexander with the Houston Fire Department.

The man and woman were in the living room and the children in a bedroom. They would all be taken to the hospital, but none of them survived.

"It's hard because, I mean, to see them and to just know that no one in this row will ever see those kids again, anyone that knew her, that's going to be a hard thing," said Whitaker.

Arson investigators are working to determine the cause of the fire. Meanwhile, the medical examiner will work to determine the exact cause of death for all four victims. The only victim who has been identified is Ramiro Hinojosa, a 44-year-old Hispanic man.