MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Police are investigating a fire in northwest Miami-Dade County that claimed the lives of a mother and her two children.
The fire started early Wednesday morning on the third floor of Country Lane Condominiums at Northwest 170th Street and 67th Avenue.
Miami-Dade police identified the victims as Katrena Williams, 42, and her two children, Vincent Williams, 3, and Makayla Williams, 12.
Anneia Robles was in tears at the thought of her neighbors' deaths. She called them "very, very nice."
Family friend Tony Colden said he could smell the smoke down the hall.
"You can see where I think they broke the front window out," Colden said.
Local 10's Ben Kennedy said neighbors helped put out the fire.
Makayla attended Bob Graham Education Center. Grief counselors were at the school to help her classmates cope.
Bruno Mendoza, the father of a student, said he hopes other children will learn something from what happened.
"What's one do when something like this happens at home," Mendoza said.
Local 10's Liane Morejon said Williams and her husband worked at Miami-Dade Transit.
"Today I join the Miami-Dade County family and the residents of our community to mourn the tragic death of Katrena Williams, her daughter Makayla, and son Vincent Jr." Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez said in a statement. "Katrena was a member of our Miami-Dade Transit Department, where she worked as a clerk. Her husband, Vincent Williams Sr., is also a part of our county family. Our thoughts and prayers are with Vincent Sr. and the entire Williams family."
The cause of the fire is under investigation, but investigators said it appears to have started in the kitchen.