New York City Fire Department officials say a space heater caused a house fire in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn that killed a young boy Saturday.
Firefighters responded to a call at approximately 2:50 a.m. Saturday for a fire in the first floor of a home located on Bedford Avenue near Farragut Road.
Police say Aschton Charles, 8, 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.
"My little sister she tried to get my 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, Steven Brette.
Fire officials said residents who were trapped on the second floor were removed safely.
Neighbors said they helped shelter the rest of the family.
"They recently moved into the neighborhood so we have not really met or, you know, to get contact to find out what their names are or anything. But last night I pulled them in the house but I didn't get to ask names, because everybody was screaming and confused," a neighbor said. "It's shocking. We all didn't expect something like this, we don't know."
Meanwhile, the family 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.
We reached out to the red cross tonight
A Red Cross spokesman tells NY1 a case worker will meet with the family Monday and possibly extend their stay adding, "We will not allow them to be out in the cold."
Donations are being collected by the World Missions Assembly, located at 1407 Flatbush Avenue, care of the "Charles Fund".
For more information, call (718) 676-1385 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meantime, the FDNY is reminding city residents to know the dos and don'ts of space heaters.
Fire officials say they should be placed at least three feet from anything that can burn and should never be left unattended.