- Associated Press - Monday, February 9, 2015

JAMESON, Mo. (AP) - The bodies of two of three children who died in a fire in northwest Missouri have been recovered as workers continue to sift through the burned-out farmhouse about 60 miles northeast of St. Joseph, according to the county sheriff.

Three other people escaped from the fire Saturday night before the two-story farmhouse near Jameson collapsed, Daviess County Sheriff Ben Becerra said.

The children who died in the fire were identified Monday as Jazmin Curtis, 6; Connor Uthe, 2; and Cooper Uthe, 9 months, The Kansas City Star reported (https://bit.ly/1CLVDxO ). Investigators did say which two bodies were found Monday morning.

Becerra said Jordan Curtis, 20; Travis Curtis, 10; and Drake Curtis, 8, escaped. Jordan Curtis, an uncle to some of the children, was injured when he tried to go back into the home to rescue the others but was turned back by intense heat. He was in serious condition Monday. Drake Curtis was listed as critical and Travis was released from the hospital.

The fire likely started in the first-floor living room where the children were sleeping but the cause remains under investigation, the sheriff said.

Jordan Curtis, who was babysitting, told investigators he awoke to a smoke-filled room and started grabbing children to lead them outside.

Charles Allan Curtis and his fiance, Cheyenne Uthe, arrived as the house was burning and alerted authorities. The home was engulfed in flames when rescuers arrived only minutes later, Becerra said.

On Monday, volunteer firefighters and officials from the Missouri State Fire Marshall’s office were examining the remnants of the 100-year-old rented home.

“With an old house like that, they go up like a matchbook,” Becerra said.


Information from: The Kansas City Star, https://www.kcstar.com

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