Community Reaches Out After Deadly Fire

By: Tamara Evans Email
By: Tamara Evans Email

A community is still in shock over the Christmas Eve deaths of four young people.

3-year-old Brandon, 5-year-old Wayne and 7-year-old Timothy Elam were inside a home in Mt. Sterling with their 17-year-old cousin, Shirley Rothwell, when flames broke out Wednesday.

Neighbors pulled the four from the burning home, but it appears they all died from smoke inhalation.

Thursday night, dozens turned out for a vigil in the children's honor and the community support is still strong.

Several funds have been set up to help the family pay for funeral expenses.

The family has set up a fund in in memory of the children. You can make a donation at Peoples Bank locations in and around Mt. Sterling under the Rothwell Fund.

Funds are also being collected at Mt. Sterling Elementary School. You can send checks or money to:

6601 Indian Mound Drive
Mt. Sterling, KY 40353

A friend of the family, Bill Alfrey has donated four plots in a local cemetery where the children will be buried.

Visitation for the four will be held Monday at the First Baptist Church from 5-9 p.m. in Mt. Sterling.

The funerals will be held Tuesday at one o'clock at the church.

The burials will follow at Machpelah Cemetery.

Fire investigators are still trying to determine the cause of the fire. Linda Yarber, the mother of 17-year-old Shirley Rothwell, says she believes it was electrical and told her landlord numerous times they were having problems.

The family says they appreciate all the support the community has given them. They didn't have life insurance for the three boys, or their cousin.

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  • by staceyb Location: florida on Jun 25, 2009 at 10:20 AM
    These boys are gods angels.. I knew them very well and can't believe their gone.. I live in Florida and visited them every year. Timmy always wanted candy that's what I would bring everytime. Then when Wayne was old enough he then expected candy.. My heart goes out to the family and they will always be in my heart and prayers.. These were my buddies that I love very much. It still hasn't hit me that they are gone but they are in a better place now and they will never be forgotten... They were such great kids that they touched everyones live that knew them.. Their parents have had such a hard time with losing their first child and I can't imagine their mental state now. I will be going to Ky in a few months to pay my dues to the family and will be donating as much as I can with material things and my love for my friends. Everyone please keep the parents of these 4 children in your prayers daily they need it..... Love your friend in Florida Stacey B
  • by Rita B Location: Mount Sterling on Dec 29, 2008 at 07:00 AM
    Many thoughts and prayers are being said from my family. We pray that God will comfort the Rothwell Family, and give them hope and strength in the coming days ahead.
  • by thelma on Dec 28, 2008 at 04:51 PM
    my heart goes out to the familys.our prayers are with them.i pray they will look to god for strengh and comfort.may god bless.
  • by dusty Location: mt.sterling on Dec 27, 2008 at 09:36 PM
    my hart goes out to the family, our comminutiy will do ever thing to help
  • by cassie on Dec 27, 2008 at 05:51 PM
    My hart goes out to the famillys and my prayes are with them and my GOd bless them the mother and father to i dont know what its like i am so sorry for your lost you will be in my hart and prayers .
  • by glanny Location: lex on Dec 27, 2008 at 12:10 PM
    my heart goes out to the family, may they all go to heaven. if the landlord has been told numerous times about the electrical, then she is in big trouble, lives could have been save, she done nothing about it. trouble
  • by VICKY Location: MT. STERLING on Dec 26, 2008 at 10:32 AM


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