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2 dead, 2 critically hurt after fire on Thanksgiving morning at Bronx apartment building

Daughter, father killed in Morris Heights apartment fire
Daughter, father killed in Morris Heights apartment fire 02:32

NEW YORK -- It was a devastating Thanksgiving morning for a family in the Bronx. A father and daughter were killed in a fire in Morris Heights.

CBS2's Kristie Keleshian has more on how neighbors tried to help.

Martina Suarez was tearfully speechless over the loss of both her 20-year-old sister, Odalys Aramboles, and 60-year-old father, Perfecto Aramboles.

"I did the best I can," neighbor Manuel Jimenez said.

Jimenez lives upstairs. He woke up to smoke in his hallway and heard screams from downstairs from possibly Odalys Aramboles, who family said had autism.

"'My sister and father is in there.' I started kicking the door, door opened up, black smoke came out. I grabbed the door open. The daughter tried to go in there. I grabbed her. I said, 'You can't,'" Jimenez said.

But he says later on he heard she did go back inside. Their family says her father, Perfecto Aramboles, died of cardiac arrest in the fire that firefighters also had to break locks to confront.

"I'm sad. It's Thanksgiving. I wish they didn't have to go through this. I mean, no one, and I feel real bad," Jimenez said.

Members of the Aramboles family spent Thursday morning gathering whatever belongings they could from the now-charred apartment, the only one where the 5 a.m. fire was contained.

Councilwoman Pierina Sanchez said she knocked on every unit's door and only heard the same complaints.

"I noticed that there was a heat and hot water complaint from a few days ago and then there had been many in the spring. But we're definitely gonna be looking into that to understand if there are any heat and hot water issues and that absolutely needs to be addressed," Sanchez said.

The family says 63-year-old Lorenza Suarez, Odalys Aramboles' mom and Perfecto Aramboles' wife, is at Jacobi Medical Center oxygen chamber, along with her 43-year-old daughter, Rosana.

"Everyone that's in this building knows each other, so there were a lot of tears shed," Sanchez said.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation. CBS2 has learned it may have started in the kitchen.

The family and neighbors are planning a GoFundMe page for the devastated family. 

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