NEW YORK - The FDNY and NYPD released the identities of the nine adults and eight children who were killed in the Bronx apartment fire. The victims ranged in age from 2 to 50.
A vigil was held on Tuesday evening for the victims. Residents braved cold temperatures to remember the three young children who were part of a family that tried to make it down to safety but perished in the smoke.
"Because I have kids of my own, the whole family," Bronx resident Maria Gomez said. "The family who lost their life. It's heartbreaking."
Fire officials say a malfunctioning electric space heater started the fire Sunday that killed 17 people.
"My children know people from this building in particular, and I've been in this community for 21 years and I see these people every day that I know them by name or not, you know, they're family," Bronx resident Vanessa Riddick said. "And you know, we know even more now when we see the support that the community is giving to one another."
Flames damaged only a small part of the 19-story building, but smoke poured through the building after tenants fleeing the unit where the blaze began left the apartment door open behind them in their hurry to escape.
Federal safety regulators at the Consumer Product Safety Commission have opened an investigation into the space heater.
The FDNY and NYPD released the identities of all the victims: