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Prevention efforts underway following fatal house fire

MILWAUKEE, WI (CBS 58) – Family and friends are remembering a 12-year-old boy who died in a house fire Monday night.

Family and friends stopped by the site Tuesday morning in disbelief.

According to the fire department, this is the 9th fire related death so far this year and the second involving a child.

“A God sent child, an angel, an innocent little boy,” says Reanetta Bufford, a family friend. “He thought his brothers were still in there but they were already outside. He went back in to try and get them and he didn’t make it out”.

It was just after 10 o’Clock Monday night when crews responded to the home near 5th and Wright.

“Our first company was on scene in three minutes and report of a 12 year-old boy in the upper part of the home,” says Milwaukee fire chief Mark Rohlfing.

Once inside, firefighters found the 12-year-old boy had succumbed to the high heat and fire on the second floor of the home.

“It’s difficult to think that we’ve done our best and there’s still some family missing their 12 year-old today,” says Chief Rohlfing.

The fire department says there were no working smoke detectors in the house.

On Tuesday, fire officials went door to door providing and checking for working smoke alarms.

“I’m not sure what the condition of the home is but it’s a sad situation,” says Kenneth Lowery Sr., a neighbor.

“Love your kids because you never know where you’re going to go,” says Bufford. “But we always want to go before our children”.

Aside from having proper working smoke alarms, the department encourages having an escape plan and practicing it.

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