Blaze Kills Three Children

November 18, 2005 – Posted at 6:32 p.m. CST

FORREST CITY, AR -- It's a wake up call no grandmother wants to receive.

"About 4 a.m. my son Joshua came to my house beating on the door saying help me because my house is on fire," said grandmother Joyce Watkins.

Inside the burning house 6-year-old Matthew Watkins, 5-year-old Everne Watkins, and 3-year-old Shekinah Watkins sat trapped.

"There were three children in the house. They could hear them in the house which didn't last for long thank goodness," said Forrest City Fire Chief Dan Curtner.

"I heard my granddaughter Everne say 'nana, help me' and I tried to follow her voice and I was telling her nana is on her way, nana is on her way," said Watkins.

Despite breaking windows and trying desperately to save her grandchildren, Watkins was unsuccessful.

"I was trying to follow her voice but it liked faded, I didn't hear it anymore," said Watkins.

"The fire started because of a bad electrical socket in dining room and quickly spread to the whole house leaving the three children trapped inside," said Curtner, "That time of day that early in the morning most everyone is still asleep not many people out on the roads where they would see something like that so it had the chance to get a real good start before someone noticed it."

"It's hard it's going to take a lot of prayers for this family to pull together," said Watkins.

It's a terrible tragedy the family hopes to tackle as a family.

"Everybody out there if you have babies grandkids love them because tomorrow isn't promised to you, it's not," said Watkins.

Watkins received minor burns to her shoulder while the children's father, Joshua Watkins, suffered minor burns and cuts after breaking windows in an attempt to save his children.