Three Vancouver children named as fatal cabin fire victims
Three Vancouver children who perished in a night time fire in a wooden cabin on Shuswap Lake north of Vernon have been named by their families.
Family members identified the three children as Fergus Conway, 14, his younger sister Phoebe Conway, 10, and their cousin Azra Young, 14.
The children died when fire engulfed the cabin at 1:30 a.m. on Thursday. The cabin is was detached from the main home where the adults were sleeping.
Fire department officials said it took them three hours to put out the blaze.
The families whose children died issued a short statement: “Fergus and Phoebe are brother and sister. Both are from Vancouver.Azra is their cousin and she is also from Vancouver.”
“The fire occurred at their family cabin which, together with their extended family, the Collier Family from Kamloops, has been their summer home for 4 generations,” said the statement. It did not state who the Collier family is but it is believed to be part of an extended family of cousins.
“This tragedy is being grieved by three families of cousins, parents and grandparents as well as by their wide community of friends in both Kamloops and Vancouver,” said the statement.
“The family is requesting that media respect their privacy during this very difficult time. The family will not be taking calls or granting interviews from the media but will be providing additional information as required in the days and weeks to come, via RCMP,” the statement added.
“RCMP E Division Major Crime Unit, BC Coroners Service and Fire Commissioners Office conducted a preliminary examination of the fire scene on July 23, 2009, and are proceeding with the forensic examination today,” police said.
“Based on the preliminary examination and investigation conducted to date, the investigators at this time, have found no indication of foul play. Each agency has dedicated a team of specialized investigators to ensure the utmost professionalism and sensitivity is extended to this matter. The examiners will continue their work with respect to the fire cause and origin,” police said.