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Father dead, mother and sons hospitalized after Bronx high-rise fire

Father killed in Bronx high-rise fire
Father killed in Bronx high-rise fire 01:50

NEW YORK -- There was a tragedy in the Bronx on Monday night. An apartment fire took the life of a father.

CBS2 spoke with a relative briefly over the phone on Tuesday. That person shared that two other family members who escaped the Highbridge fire are still in the hospital.

Meanwhile, many are waiting to learn from fire officials what caused the fatal blaze.

Flames could be seen shooting out of an apartment on the 24th floor of the high-rise building. A family of four was inside, but only three survived.

"They're all in there being treated for smoke inhalation. The baby got burned, second-degree burns to the back," said the mother's cousin.

She said the 46-year-old and her two sons, ages 15 years old and 11 months old, made it out. Their 45-year-old father was rescued by firefighters, but later died at a hospital.

"My wife called me. She said, 'Look over at the terrace.' I look over and I saw the fire and I saw all the trucks out here on the sidewalk," tenant Harold Hargrave said.

The 911 call came in around 10:15 p.m. on Monday. Firefighters rushed to the scene on Ogden Avenue at 166th Street.

"It was a heavy fire. It looks like it started in the kitchen, but fire marshals are investigating that. They were met at the front door with heavy fire," FDNY Deputy Chief Christopher Ritchie said.

As the FDNY continued working inside on Tuesday to figure out the cause, outside, its members handed out safety information and smoke alarms to tenants.

"It's very important to try to be on top of things and make sure my apartment is equipped with smoke alarms, which it is already, but I fell I can also use another one," Hargrave said.

Those who know the family impacted offered a message of support.

"The best thing I can say is God bless you, pray to God, have faith," a woman named Jackie said.

Neighbors said firefighters told them to stay inside their apartments during the fire. Others self evacuated. It took less than an hour to get the fire under control.

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