PENFIELD, N.Y. - Police say an 8-year-old boy killed in a fire at a relative's mobile home in suburban Rochester was trying to rescue a disabled family member when he and two adults died.
Cpl. John Helfer of the Monroe County Sheriff's Office said nine people were in the single-wide trailer in the town of Penfield when the fire started around 4:45 a.m. Monday.
The dead were identified as 57-year-old Louis Beach, the homeowner; 54-year-old Steven Smith, and 8-year-old Tyler Doohan of East Rochester. Sheriff's deputies say Doohan apparently discovered the fire and roused six people who got out safely.
Helfer said four adults and two children, ages 4 and 6, were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
"My heart dropped, I was just like wow. it was so intense I can't believe it happened. I feel like it was a dream," Eric Berg, a neighbor, told CBS affiliate WROC in Rochester.
There were many animals inside this home as well, WROC reports. At least one dog died and a cat rescue group is hoping to find some of at least 10 cats that were in the home.
The cause of the fire is under investigation, although initial findings indicate it was an accident caused by an electrical problem, reports WROC.
Local Superintendent Richard Stutzman told WROC the little boy's death is having a big impact.
"To go running back in there it's quite something. It's probably not what you teach in fire school, however he did it and that's how we're going to remember him," Stutzman said.