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Investigators locate body of child in Fort Providence house fire


Police in Fort Providence say investigators have located the body of a child killed in a house fire in the community two days ago.

The Monday afternoon fire was so severe, police said, that officers could find no way to reach and rescue the child at the time. The coroner’s office is now investigating.

Residents of the NWT have donated thousands of dollars and a wide range of supplies to the affected family in the past 48 hours. The family was said by a relative to have “lost everything” in the fire.

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In a statement on Wednesday, police set out their efforts to try to save the child, who has not been publicly identified.

“RCMP, upon attending to the fully engulfed house, were advised one child was unaccounted for,” police said.

A house fire in Fort Providence on Monday, December 28. Photo: GoFundMe
This image of a house fire in Fort Providence on Monday, December 28, was posted to a GoFundMe page set up to help those involved.

“RCMP members entered the home in an attempt to locate the child. Unfortunately, the fire and smoke prevented the members from locating the child before they had to retreat.

“Once extinguished, concerted efforts were made by the investigating agencies and support partners to enter the house in a safe manner. Today, investigators were able to do so and a deceased person has been located within the residence.”

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Police extended their condolences to the family of the deceased.

On Tuesday, NWT health minister Julie Green said the territory’s health authority was dispatching counsellors to help the community cope with the tragedy.

Premier Caroline Cochrane, urging residents to help fundraising efforts for the family, wrote on Twitter: “Losing a child is every parent’s worst nightmare. My heart goes out to the family of the young girl whose life was tragically cut short in Fort Providence on December 28.”

Around $13,000 had been raised for the family through a GoFundMe page by 12:30pm on Wednesday.

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