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Community remembers the lives lost in Knox Co. fire


KNOX COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Jesse Disney, his fiance Nina Asher, her three year old- William Michael Frank Gray Jr., her two-year-old Camden Lee Gray, her eight-month-old Abigail Danielle Gray, their friends soon-to-be three-year-old Peyton and her two-year-old sister Brielle Cox, along with an unborn child just three months in the mother's womb. These are the list of lives lost in a Saturday morning fire.

"I just hate that this happened to our family and Nina's family, and the Cox family. If I could take it all back, I know we all would," expressed Joshua Luke, Disney's cousin.

Hundreds of people came and went at the Disney family's home, in Gray, bringing bags of food or a simple hug.

"I was surprised to see how many people came out, and I'm sure I'll be surprised again when we have to do the funeral," said Luke.

They're not alone. Friends are doing everything they can for the Cox family, who are also learning how to deal with their broken heart.

"The father told me yesterday, as he was crying and clutching two of their stuffed animals, that they were just so excited to see the Easter Bunny in a couple of weeks," described family friend, Tammy Cannon-Douglass.

The young girls never made it that far, so others stepped in to bring the Easter Bunny to them.

"I knew that I couldn't do much, but I knew I could do this and it's what I wanted to do to help them," said Tonya Ridener, who has never met the girls but would see them playing down the street from her sister's home.

So Ridener and others chipped in to buy the Peyton and Brielle new dresses, shoes, and purple and pink stuffed rabbits all to lay the young girls to rest in.

"It touches everybody's hearts and we're just pulling together and help out as much as we can," said Barbara Ridener.

While the cause is still undetermined, family members say Jesse Disney was in the process of remodeling his home.

"They were in the middle of painting, getting ready to paint the room, and then paint a nursery for the new baby," answered Luke, adding, "he was a 'jack of all trades, master of none.'"

However, his cousin says Disney's favorite hobby was building guitars, although he could do a lot more with them than just build them.

"Yeah, he was a good musician," said Luke.

Disney's YouTube videos show just how talented the 27-year-old father-to-be was.

"He actually picked up the harmonica and learned how to play it. It didn't take him a week," said Luke, who said it was all "self taught."

Now that music is gone and a silence hangs over the Disney house, but the memories of Disney and Asher and all of the little ones will live on forever in the hearts of these loved ones.

"We'll miss him."

For now everyone is simply asking for prayers, as they work through the extreme grief at this time. The Disney family say they are still working their way through funeral arrangements. The Cox family has an account set up with Vankirk Funeral Home, if you'd like to make a donation in the girls' memory.


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