4 kids, 2 adults killed in rural Illinois house fire, victims ID’d

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DIXON, Ill.  -- A family of six was killed after their house caught fire overnight outside rural Dixon, Ill., and officials have identified the victims.

Parents Timothy and Melissa Shaw and their children, Ethan, 17, LeAnne, 15, Hailey, 12, and Dylan, 11, died in the fire early Tuesday morning.

Melissa and Timothy Shaw

The Ogle County 911 Center received a call around 12:01 a.m. Tuesday from 17-year-old Ethan Shaw who said he was trapped in his basement bedroom, which was filling with smoke, according to the Ogle County Sheriff.

When first responders arrived on the scene, the two story residential structure was fully engulfed in flames. The family was still inside.

Several fire departments responded, but by the time they got the ferocious blaze under control, there was nothing they could do to save the family of six. One was found on the second floor, four on the first floor, and one in the basement.

Autopsies revealed all six family members died of smoke inhalation.

The sheriff notified next-of-kin, and the teachers and administrators where the kids went to school. A fire department spokesperson said there were multiple pets including several cats and two dogs that also died in the fire.

The Ogle County Sheriff's Office, Illinois Fire Marshal, and Illinois State Police Crime Scene investigators are now working to figure out what caused the fire, and why the family of six were unable to escape the blaze.

Based on what they've seen so far, investigators said the tragedy appears to be an accident.

Residents in the close-knit community are reeling from the terrible news, just two days before Thanksgiving.

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