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Father Speaks Out About Fire That Killed His Children


A Fort Campbell soldier injured in a fatal fire at his family's home on base said he watched helplessly with a broken leg as his wife tried to save the couple's children.

Rebekah Smallwood, 2, and Samuel Fagan, 9, were killed in the May house fire that investigators now say was caused by arson.

Army Spc. Wayne Smallwood told WTVF-TV in Nashville that he shattered his leg jumping from the building to get water.

Smallwood said he couldn't stand up to help his wife, Billi-Jo, as she tried to escape to the roof with the three small children.

"You always wonder if there was something more you could have done. And everything just happened so fast that, you know, there was no way to react," Smallwood said Tuesday.

His wife was badly burned trying to reach the children. The couple's infant child, Nevaeh, was unharmed.

"Can you imagine anything worse? We lost our children, you know," he said. "It's pretty upsetting."

He declined to comment on the investigation of arson, which came after began after federal investigators ruled out natural and accidental causes of the fire.

"I'm not saying someone intentionally started it because that would be trying to go into their investigation," he said. "I'm not at liberty to talk about that."

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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