The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office has reported that a tragic fire in Western Washington on Saturday morning. This fire has resulted in the death of five family members, including three children.
The fire occurred at around 6:30am in a rural area along Sherman Valley Rd SW.
A neighbor named Ken Smith shared, “It brings a tear to our eye just to think about the fact, you could lose kids, much less an entire family.” He continued, saying, “my grandson went to school with their youngest and there are a couple of middle-schoolers over there.”
Smith resides on the other side of the street from the family of five who tragically perished: the father, mother, and their three kids.
According to Lt. Cameron Simper of the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office, the family resided in a house that was affiliated with a barn. In the past, neighbors reported that the family leased part of their land for special events, which they called “Sherman Valley Ranch.”
Lt. Simper says the home also sat on a larger “family property” where the grandparents also lived. He said the closest neighbors are family members, and they were the first to call 911.
Lt. Simper said that the residence where the incident occurred was part of a larger plot of land belonging to the extended family. He noted that the closest people to the home were the relatives of the deceased family members, and they were the ones who first contacted 911.
Lt. Simper noted that a neighbor phoned in the fire after noticing the blaze and hearing the screams and cries for help. When the firefighters got to the scene, the house was already completely engulfed in flames.
Lt. Simper noted that only the female guest in the house at the time of the incident survived. She was able to do so because she escaped to the roof.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was contacted by firefighters due to the high number of fatalities. At this point, it is too soon to know the cause of the fire. Since there are no fire hydrants in the rural area, a large firefighting force was required.