House fire in Cahokia Heights claims two young lives

Estimated read time 4 min read

A house fire on a quiet Friday afternoon has brought immense sorrow to Cahokia Heights, claiming the lives of two 4-year-old children. The town is grieving for Chad and Charli Metcalf, who both died in the fire that destroyed their home on St. Gregory Drive.

The Cahokia Heights Fire Department received the fire call at about 2:10 p.m. Firefighters from neighboring areas including Prairie Du Pont, Dupo, and Church Road also came to help. Despite their efforts, the intense smoke and flames took the lives of Chad and Charli, leaving their community in shock and their family facing a terrible loss.


A Community in Shock

As news of the tragedy spread, residents of Cahokia Heights – a community where everyone knows each other – were stunned by the sudden loss.

In a sad turn of events, St. Clair County Coroner Calvin Dye Sr. has confirmed that Chad Metcalf died at the scene from what seems to be smoke inhalation. An autopsy is yet to take place. Later, Charli Metcalf passed away from her injuries at a hospital in St. Louis. With official statements and word from their family, we now know the names of the children involved in this sorrowful incident, and it’s taken a heavy toll on our community.


The Tragic Events Unfold

Fire Chief Steve Robbins reported that his team was called in after getting word of two kids trapped in a house on fire. Arriving firefighters faced a chaotic situation, with intense flames consuming the small, wooden three-bedroom home. Despite their best attempts, they couldn’t reach the children in time due to the severe blaze. Robbins mentioned finding the kids in one of the bedrooms, which only adds to the heartbreaking nature of this fire.

The firefighters managed to get the fire under control within 20 minutes, showing their quick response and skill despite the devastating circumstances.

The firefighters showed great courage and resolve. Sadly, their successful efforts to put out the fire were marred by the death of young children. No firefighters got hurt in the process, but Robbins expressed a deep sadness saying that losing anyone to a fire is hard especially when they are young kids.

The state fire marshal is still trying to find out what caused the fire with initial guesses being made about its start. The mother of the children, overwhelmed with grief wondered aloud if her son might have accidentally lit a curtain on fire with a lighter. Her neighbor, Jewel Dickerson who tried to help during the fire lamented saying that whatever caused it shouldn’t have happened and mourned the loss of the children’s lives.

The identity of the mother is being kept private as she is mourning her loss. She recounted a woman described the terrifying moments before realizing her house was on fire. She was in the shower when she saw flames. She called out to her kids, only to hear the heartbreaking words, “I can’t, mommy. It’s too hot.” Sadly, these were the last words she heard from her child—a painful memory she’ll always carry.

Neighbor Cortez Smith saw the mother’s anguish and recalled his own feelings about the sad event. “The mom was out there crying,” he said. “She told us two kids were still inside. I just bowed my head and started to pray.”


A Community Mourns

The town of Cahokia Heights is dealing with this sad loss together. Fire Chief Robbins spoke about how hard this has hit his team, saying losing two young children makes this fire particularly difficult to cope with. The entire community feels this loss deeply, as they rally around the family that’s grieving.

People are grieving the loss of Chad and Charli Metcalf. After the fire, everyone is wondering how it started. The investigation is still going on. But what really matters now is how heartbreaking it is to lose two young kids. Their family and everyone in Cahokia Heights are feeling this deep sadness. The whole town is coming to terms with how quickly life can change. They’re also seeing how much we need each other during such a tough time.

Celina Brooks

Celina Brooks from Mussoorie is a Writer & Researcher. She earned her Engineering degree in IT from Rutgers University. She is a technology enthusiast but loves writing and talking about local news as well. She is a jolly person with 2 children.

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