HARVEY -- "You know, they're in awe."
Still shaken up, Judy Velasquez is having a hard time wrapping her head around her ex-brother-in law's death. She described him as a wonderful person. His death, adding just another blow to a family that she says is already in mourning.
"Right now, it's really, really hard for us because we just lost their brother within 12 days from cancer," Velasquez said. "So, the family is really taking it hard."
The fire broke out just before 5 p.m. Friday afternoon on the 700 block of Grefer Avenue.
"The medical, West Jefferson Medical Center was right behind us and they, with the coroner's office right behind them pronounced the victim's deceased on the scene," Capt. Michael McAuliffe said.
Captain McAuliffe with the Harvey Volunteer Fire Company believes the blaze may have started in the kitchen of the small apartment.
Velasquez and neighbors say the other victim in the fire was a woman from Georgia who was in town visiting the male victim.
Firefighters tell Eyewitness News both victims were pulled outside of the complex.
Meanwhile, some neighbors a few units down say this is an incident they will never forget. Debra Toups, who lives two units away from where the fire occurred says she remembers smelling smoke and walked out to try and find out what was going on.
"I know I hear somebody screaming and opened the door, and I walked and I seen them. I seen them laying down. Pulling them out of the house," Debra Toups said.
In light of tonight's tragedy, Velasquez says they are going to need every bit of strength to make it through this ordeal.
"Sunday, we plan on having a little service for their brother they just lost 12 days ago. So it's definitely, definitely hard you know. Especially this time of the year," Velasquez said.
The fire is under investigation.
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