RICHMOND, Va. – Just around sunrise Wednesday morning, firefighters arrived on scene to find light smoke coming from the roof of a South Richmond home.
Crews found two adult women and a male child inside the home on the 6000 block of Laveta Drive, near Midlothian Turnpike and German School Road.
All were transported to the hospital but were pronounced dead shortly afterward.
The deceased were identified as 61-year-old Rosa Fowlkes, her daughter Ariel Hubbard Kirby and 5-year-old grandson Josiah Hubbard Kirby.
Their deaths have impacted the Richmond community.
Richmond Sheriff C.T. Woody said Fowlkes was a nine-year veteran in the Community Services division.
"My heart is heavy,” Woody said. “We are mourning the loss of a great community leader."
He described Corporal Fowlkes as a dedicated and committed person.
"She wanted to get things done,” Woody said. “She didn't want you to get in her way. When it was time to go home there was no such thing as that."
And Lieutenant Colonel Carol Dabney with the sheriff’s department said Fowlkes was known to put others first.
"Recently, we lost one of our seniors and Corporal Fowlkes was diligent with checking on them, and making sure they were okay,” said Lt. Col. Carol Dabney.
"We will certainly miss her,” Dabney added.
Neighbors said four people lived in the home, but no mention of a fourth fire victim has been made by officials.
The causes of death and the fire remain under investigation, according to Richmond Fire spokesman Lt. Chris Armstrong.
Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire after 30 minutes.
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