PARIS, Il (WTWO/WAWV) — An investigation continues into a deadly apartment fire that left 2 dead and 2 hospitalized in Paris, Illinois.
According to Edgar County Coroner, Scott Barrett, Edgar County Dispatch received a call at 6:07 a.m. from a resident saying her apartment was on fire and she was unable to get out of her second-floor unit. The apartment complex has four units and is located at 501 South Central Street.
Upon arrival, first responders found the structure completely engulfed. Occupants of the apartment building were able to get out and told first responders two tenants were unaccounted for.
Firefighters found the bodies of 52-year-old Tammi Keefer and Bobby J. Turner, a 72-year-old. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.
The fire changed the lives of many, including Sara Mills. She is the daughter of Keefer.
“[Keefer] was my best friend, I would go to her no matter what. It’s going to be hard because I just want to call her right now and ask what I can do, but I can’t,” Mill said.
It was later discovered that Keefer made the original 911 call. An autopsy on both bodies is scheduled for October 3 and an investigation is ongoing.
Mills’ brother and his wife also live in the same apartment complex. The two were wed just a week ago and have lost everything due to the fire. The blaze also destroyed multiple trophies, childhood memorabilia and pictures of Mills.
Despite the devastation, the family is staying together.
“My mom raised me to be strong and independent. I know she would want me to keep it together because the rest of the family is kind of struggling. I feel like I have a void to fill with her, I have to try and be the glue-like she was,” Mills added.
In the town of over 8000 residents are collecting and donating items to those impacted by the incident. Denise Tingley and Sheri Washburn both knew Keefer and say this incident is heartbreaking.
“She’d give the shirt off her back if she had to. She’d do anything for you, she’s a sweetheart,” Washburn said.
Tingley shared the same sentiment.
“We lost a wonderful person, that’s all I can say. I’ll miss her terribly,” Tingley said.
A GoFundMe has been started to help the families of those impacted, you can donate by clicking on the provided link.
We were unable to contact Turner’s family or friends, if you have any contact information on Turner or how the community can help his loved ones, please email email@example.com