Three white candles, their flames blowing in the wind, stood next to the charred remains of a rowhouse yesterday, providing a somber memorial to the tragic fire that claimed the lives of a man and a woman.
The fire, which consumed a house on B Street near Ruscomb, in Feltonville, was the deadlier of two blazes Saturday. A popular Old City nightclub was ravaged by a blaze later in the morning, but there were no injuries.
The Feltonville fire - caused by food left cooking on the stove, officials said - was reported at 1:09 a.m., fire officials said.
"I heard the little boy crying, and I called police," said a neighbor on B Street who did not want to be identified. "I saw the sister on top of the roof, running back and forth."
The neighbor said that at first she had thought the boy, identified by neighbors as Jonathan Wilson, was playing, but that she knew he was serious when he started yelling for help, saying his grandmother was going to die.
"It was a crazy scene," she said. "I'm still thinking about it."
Police wouldn't confirm the names of those who perished, but neighbors said a grandmother and a male relative named Bobby had died in the blaze. Besides Jonathan, other family members include his brother, Kareem, and their sister, Trina.
Neighbors said all the family members were home except Kareem, who was visiting a friend's house nearby.
"Kareem just started high school; they didn't bother anybody," said neighbor Itary Germosen, who knew the younger children. "The firemen took the fire out quick, but we couldn't see anything."
Germosen's mother, Yvette, said the smoke awakened her and she called police.
"We couldn't see across the street, the smoke was so thick," she said. "It looked like the fire damaged some of the roofs. The boys were good kids."
Meanwhile, in the other fire, the Five Spot nightclub, on Bank Street near Market, in Old City, was a pile of charred ruins yesterday.
Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers said the blaze started about 9:30 a.m. Saturday and went to four alarms in just under an hour.
"We needed to get the manpower there quickly so that we could try to minimize the damage," Ayers said.