- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 24, 2014

PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - A man, woman and their two young children died following a fire at their home in Michigan’s northeastern Lower Peninsula that may have been caused by an earlier barbecue and bonfire, authorities said.

The bodies were found following the early Tuesday fire in Iosco County’s Plainfield Township, about 140 miles northwest of Detroit, state police said. First Lt. Melvin Mathews told MLive.com the cause is under investigation, but the family had just had a barbecue and bonfire.

There was “no indication” of arson,” Mathews said.

Mathews identified the dead as 23-year-old Kayla Pemberton, 31-year-old Steven J. Renaud, 4-year-old Kaylee Renaud and 1-year-old Sadie Renaud. He said they were the only ones in the house and the fire likely started near the rear of the home.

Jody Downs, a cousin, told WPBN-TV she went to the home on Tuesday and was “devastated” to learn of the deaths. She said Pemberton worked in restaurants and did some home health care work while her husband stayed home to care for the girls.

“They’re a loving family,” Downs said. “The world will miss them.”

Theresa White, a neighbor and friend, said her daughter works with Pemberton and she knew something was wrong when Pemberton didn’t show up for work. White said Pemberton was a “hard worker” and had posted about the barbecue and bonfire on Facebook.



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