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Mother, Community In Shock After 3 Kids Killed In House Fire

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A fire that claimed the lives of three children in Minneapolis late Saturday night may have been caused by an oven.

Family members tell WCCO that three young children, ages 1,6 and 8, had just moved into this house along Penn Avenue North on Friday. We're told the oven may have been used to help heat the home, which is not recommended by officials with the Minneapolis Fire Department.

Nina Moini talked with the children's mother Sunday after a horrible situation. She was obviously not doing well at all, although she didn't appear to be physically hurt.

She could barely stand at times, but her family members lifted her up and say she felt like she needed to see the home.

The deaths of three small children are so devastating for people in the neighborhood. Strangers stopped by to leave little pops of color on the doorstep of a burnt home.

"They wanted to go to the park today  but I said instead of thinking about yourselves let's take some time out and show appreciation for those little kids," Ashley Riser of Minneapolis said.

Riser couldn't help but think of her own children when she heard about the fire along Penn Avenue North, trying to imagine what their mother, the lone survivor, must be feeling.

But no one could imagine.

Taneshia Stewart stood outside the home where her children's lives ended the night before. Surrounded by family, she tried to describe her efforts to save them.

"I loved my children. I would do anything in world for my children. I should be the one who is dead not them. I tried to do everything in my power to get them out of there," Stewart said.

The pain of the situation is unbearably raw, felt by everyone.

The family's pastor says there will be a gathering Tuesday evening around 6 p.m. at Holsey CME church along Logan Ave N.

Fire Investigators are looking into what exactly happened and if there were any other sources of heat in the home. The owner of the house answered some questions on Sunday also. He talked about his plans to get the furnace in house fixed soon.

Yes, although he didn't want to give any more details. The fire chief says the home was inspected by the fire department in January of this year and it passed inspections and had working smoke detectors.


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