DUNDALK, Md. - Daylight brings a reality check -- just how bad the fire was on Hartwait St. in Dundalk on Saturday night. Windows are blown out, the siding is black. There's a notice to condemn.
"The whole house was in flames, the whole house. The fire was coming up the basement windows. The whole house was just in flames," said Ashley Grace, a neighbor.
The flowers on the fence get to the heart of the story. A young life is gone; young friends are in pain.
"When everything was happening I was hoping that she was okay, and yes I was in front of the house yesterday when this was happening. And everybody was just sitting there, but I was hoping that she would be okay because they said she was asleep. And she died and her family is inside the hospital right now," said Mariah Hicks, the victim’s friend.
Hicks has her story straight. Fire investigators say the girl, who friends know as Raven, was inside with her mother, grandfather and five other children. They were taken to Johns Hopkins Hospital but are expected to survive.
People are coming by in disbelief.
The flames were so intense, the commander had firefighters leave the home. They went back in to search for the girl and found her body on the first floor. Investigators say she died from smoke inhalation and burns.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation. The cause of the long faces needs no words.
"I'm scared. I still want her here," said Hicks.
It's not known if there were working smoke detectors in the home. Next week, firefighters will be out in the neighborhood installing the alarms for free.
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