Three children killed in a Louisiana house fire on Christmas morning were from Valley Head in DeKalb County, according to officials.
12-year-old Jasmine Mejia and two of her brothers, 11-year-old Josue Mejia and 9-year-old Rommy Mejia, perished when a fire broke out in the mobile home where they were staying in Houma, Louisiana, for the holiday.
The fire marshal said the fire started in a living room where the family was staying.
The home was completely destroyed. There's so much damage investigators said they may never be able to determine an exact cause of the fire, but they suspect a space heater may be to blame.
The home didn't have any smoke detectors that worked.
The children's parents and five other children were taken to a burn unit at a hospital in Baton Rouge.
Fire investigators said the children's father was burned rescuing one child after smoke came under his bedroom door.
News of the tragedy quickly spread back home to fellow students and teachers at Valley Head School, who said the children will be greatly missed.
"Very smart, very well-behaved. Everyone liked them. They ran all of your errands, very social; they were just very well-liked and loveable. Rommy, who was in my class, just hugged constantly... very sweet," recalled teacher Tara Kirby.
Kirby said she and the staff of the school of just 500 students said they will be bracing for a tough day when classes resume from the winter break.
"It's going to be heartbreaking when they walk in. And that's probably when it will hit; when his desk is empty and he's not there. But we have things planned. We have counselors from around the county that's going to come in and speak to the students," Kirby said.
She said she will talk to her students about grief and how to cope with loss. They will also celebrate the lives of the three children lost and remember everything the loved about them.
Kirby said a memorial fund has been set up at the three locations of Citizens Bank in Valley Head, Ider, and Mentone.
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