LEADVILLE, Colo. (CBS4) – Investigators are working to figure out what sparked a fire that killed a 10-year-old boy at a mobile home park in Leadville late last Friday.
A single mother, three of her children and a grandbaby were all asleep when the 10- year-old son ran into his mother’s room to alert her and his family about flames in a back bedroom. All of them made it out of the burning building except for the 10-year-old, Marc Anthony Reyes Lizardo, who is now being called a hero by his community.
It took firefighters four hours to put the fire out and there was little anybody could do.
“We were just praying — my family, my cousins … then one of the sheriffs came up to me and he said that he was really sorry (crying) that they could still couldn’t find him,” the victim’s sister Itzel Lizardo said. “They knew he was not alive anymore, it was very hard. I didn’t want to accept it.
“I cannot image how he was feeling in there … his emotions, what he was thinking throughout the whole time,” Lizardo said. “He didn’t deserve that.”
The Lizardo family lost everything. The shock and disbelief from what happened is not going away easily, even as the small town rallies around them.
“We don’t care about the stuff, we lost one of us, an important person; nothing is going to be able to bring him back,” Lizardo said.
For the firefighters who responded to the frantic 911 calls from neighbors, knowing the boy didn’t make it out of the fire is something they are also struggling to understand.
“They are having a real tough time with that. All firefighters know when they take on that kind of a task that there’s a possibility someone will die in a fire during their watch,” Betty Benson with the Lake County Public Information Center said. “But that doesn’t make it any easier.”
Students at the local school were too upset for homework this week. Many of them made cards for their classmate’s family instead.
Fire investigators with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation are still working on the cause for the fire. Meanwhile Leadville residents are organizing a carwash and cookout fundraiser to help the Lizardo family rebuild.