BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - A community is reeling tonight over the loss a great-grandfather and his four-year-old great-grand son.
Both died in fire that happened in the 4500 block of Ninth Terrace North in Birmingham early Friday morning.
One neighbor said she was still trying to make sense of the entire situation, saying the victims were more than just her neighbors, they were friends, and it feels like a dream she can’t wake up from.
“I just…it’s so real…it’s…I can’t…you know…it’s going to take me a minute to process it.”
Randritta Stroud struggles to find the words to describe the loss, as a makeshift altar stands on the front steps of the home where four-year-old Kyree Miles used to play.
“Kyree…he was just bubbly. He was just full of energy and very smart to be four years old. He was just very smart, and he loved apples. He’d come over and… you got apple?” Stroud recalls.
Kyree and his 67-year-old great-grand father, Bobby Miles, died in a house fire that happened around 2:30 Friday morning.
Stroud said the two were inseparable.
“I know they’re in a much better place now because if you saw one, you saw the other. So they’re together. We know they’re together,” Stroud said.
Stroud remembers her friend and neighbor as a gentle giant who always looked out for everyone...and had a generous spirit.
“Mr. Bobby…he was just the best. I’m going to miss him so much. I’m going to miss him. That was my friend. It’s just…every morning, I’m used to seeing Mr. Bobby. We’ll sit out and we’ll chit chat and talk about life and everything. He cared so, so dearly about that little boy. It’s just…I don’t know,” Stroud said.
Stroud said she’s trying to stay strong for the family and is relying on her faith to get through this difficult time.
“You can’t question God. All you gotta do is just put it up in His hands and He’ll take care of the rest. He’ll heal all of us,” Stroud said.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Chief Jackie Hicks of the Birmingham Fire Department said there were smoke detectors in the home.
He said firefighters said one was going off when they entered the home, but he believes that because of where the smoke detector was placed, it’s possible they didn’t hear it in time.