A mother and her two young children were killed in an early morning apartment fire in northwest Miami-Dade Wednesday.
The fire was reported around 12:15 a.m. at the building at 17000 Northwest 67th Avenue, Miami-Dade Police said.
When firefighters arrived they found several neighbors attempting to put the flames out at the third floor unit. The fire reportedly started in the kitchen.
"We tried our best," said Roy Christie. "We weren't quick enough - we failed."
After firefighters extinguished the flames, they found the mother and two kids inside, Miami-Dade Police spokesman Alvaro Zabaleta said.
All three were rushed to the hospital where they later died, Zabaleta said. They were identified as 42-year-old Katrena Williams, her 12-year-old daughter Makayla and 3-year-old son Vincent.
Husband Vince Williams was at work at the time of the fatal fire, officials said.
“They pulled a child out, maybe a two-year-old, 3 year old baby. And then I came downstairs after that, I didn’t want to see too much but then they brought down the second child and the mother and they were all unconscious," neighbor Dylan Oliver said.
The cause of the fire is under investigation but it appears accidental, Zabaleta said.
The official cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner but police said a possible cause is smoke inhalation.
Herman Williams works with Vince for Miami Dade County and said he has been their neighbor for years.
"It’s sad. I don’t know if he’ll ever be the same because he loved his family. He loved his daughter and son, he loved all three of them," he said. "Every time he went somewhere his daughter was with him."