UPDATE, 3/18: A GoFundMe has been set up for the family of the girl who died in Tuesday’s apartment fire.
ORIGINAL POST: NEW IBERIA, La. (KLFY) A young girl died in a New Iberia apartment fire early Tuesday morning.
Neighbors say the little girl was only seven years old.
One family said they were home when the fire started and watched the scene unfold.
“We all were sleeping in the house, and my mom just woke us up and said there was a fire. As soon as we came outside, we saw the fire, and everybody started to cry and panic,” Destiny Connor said.
Outside, a mother screamed in agony from the stairs, shouting that her young daughter was still inside the second-story apartment.
“She came outside screaming, ‘I got a child upstairs! Hurry up! Hurry up!'” Hilda Williams said.
She said her daughter, only seven years old, was trapped in her bedroom.
“There was a boy who lived next door who was trying to go in there and save her, but the fire kept pushing him back. It blew him back. He could barely get in. It was too late for her,” Desiree Connor added.
The siblings of the family said they went to school with the little girl at North Lewis Elementary and say they can’t imagine what their sweet, spunky friend next door was going through in the last moments of her life.
“Yesterday was the last day we saw her when she was walking to her house,” Desmond Connor told News 10.
“She said she was so tired that she wanted to go to sleep, and that was the only time we saw her after school.”
The family says while she was sleeping in her room that night, that’s when the fire started, and the smoke was too thick for anyone to save her in time.
“Me and her have the same birthday, April 16, but she won’t be able to celebrate her birthday now because she’s in heaven now. And her angels are still in the house,” Destiny Connor said.
They say the little girl usually stays with her grandmother but was spending the night with her mom at her apartment Tuesday night.
Officials are still investigating what started the fire that tragically took the young girl’s life.