“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” –John 15:13
US Marine Lori Doppelheuer served her country in the Marines for four to five years. However, she gave the ultimate sacrifice this week as her home burned and she sought to help rescue children who were trapped inside.
USMS Life reports:
Chris Hargis and Lori Doppelheuer both initially escaped a fire consuming their old row house, but neither one stayed outside for long: Each rushed back into the flames and smoke in a desperate bid to save their five children.
Hargis was able to rescue two daughters, ages 15 and 7.
But Doppelheuer never made it back out. She was found dead in the back of the house upstairs with the bodies of three other children: 10-year-old Christopher Kearney, 3-year-old Eagan Hargis and 20-month-old Kieran Hargis.
Doppelheuer was just 35 years old.
The Daily Mail added that Ruth Austen, a neighbor, watched as Hargin attempted to go back inside after rescuing two children, but authorities stopped him. The she witnessed Doppelheuer enter the building. “We were saying, ‘God, no, God, no,’ and I knew she wasn’t coming back out,” she said.
The DM reports:
Investigators believe the blaze began in a closed-in porch area at the rear of one of the row homes, Doyle said.
They have ruled out arson and believe it was accidental. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
The fire damaged five of 11 homes that are part of a set of row houses built in 1840, Maysville Mayor David Cartmell told Reuters.
Thirty people have been displaced and some of the houses may need to be razed.
Nearly 40 firefighters from various departments battled the blaze, but there was no saving Ms. Doppelheuer or the children. Also killed in the fire was a neighbor of Hargis, 68-year-old Larry R. Brickels.
Firefighters attempted to climb the stairs, but the staircase was weakening and the intense fire pushed them back. They also attempted to enter through a second story window, but the roof began to collapse.
According to Maysville Fire Chief Kevin Doyle, the building where the children lived did not have smoke detectors, but the building that Mr. Brickels lived in did. He also added that the “type of construction that these row houses are, are essentially a large pile of kindling.”