Nine-year-old St Lucian Fire Victim laid to rest in NY

Nine year old Saint Lucian national Ashton Charles is being laid to rest today Saturday February 16, 2013, following a fire in Brooklyn last Saturday which claimed his life. According to the website New York City Fire Department officials said a space heater caused the house fire in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn that killed the young boy.
Firefighters responded to a call at approximately 2:50 a.m. last Saturday for a fire in the first floor of a home located on Bedford Avenue near Farragut Road. Police say Ashton Charles was found unconscious and unresponsive inside the house when the fire was extinguished and was pronounced dead at the scene.
“He was my special child. He is the one who comes home and asks me, ‘Dad, how was your day?’ He’s the one I take to basketball on weekends,” said the boy’s father, Herbert Charles according to
The boys’ older brother Steven Brette is also quoted as saying that his little sister tried to get his little brother but she said he ran away when she grabbed him. “We tried to jump out the window,” said the boy’s older brother.
Fire officials said residents who were trapped on the second floor were removed safely whilst neighbors added that they helped shelter the rest of the family.
Meanwhile, the family who recently moved to the neighbourhood said they have few toiletries, almost no clothes, food or money.
The Red Cross has provided them vouchers for three nights at a local motel but after that they worry they will not have a roof over their heads.
The Saint Lucia Consulate in New York has since issued a statement informing the diaspora of the incident. “The parents and siblings of Ashton Charles are devastated by the loss of all their belongings in the fire, a loss which is insignificant when compared to the loss of a loved one at such a tender age The statement went on to inform that a funeral service would be held yesterday Friday February 15 at 7 PM whilst the burial takes place today Saturday at Kew Gardens Cemetery in Queens, NY.
An account has been established to raise funds for the family whilst donations are being collected by the World Missions Assembly, located at 1407 Flatbush Avenue, care of the “Charles Fund.”  An account has also been set up at TD Bank, account number 427 753 4082, in aid of the family.

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