A four-alarm house fire early Friday in Cumberland has claimed the lives of two young sisters, according to an afternoon statement from the Maryland State Fire Marshal.

Paige M. Ford, 7, was rescued through a window on the second story of the row house. She was suffering cardiac arrest, received CPR at the scene and was taken to Western Maryland Regional Medical, where she was pronounced dead.

Her 4-year-old sister, Jymera D. Ford, was missing for several hours. Firefighters located her body in a second-floor bedroom.

The girls' mother, Tandra Ford, is being treated for smoke inhalation. Five other residents, including an 8-month-old boy, escaped without injury from the fire, which started at 6:05 a.m. in the 300 block of E. Harrison St.

The fire and smoke damaged three rowhouses on the block, and the Red Cross is working with displaced residents. About 100 firefighters from Allegany County and Mineral County, W. Va., were on the scene throughout the morning. The origin and cause of the blaze remain under investigation, though officials have determined that the fire began on the first floor.

Three firefighters suffered minor injuries and were treated at a nearby hospital, and three others were treated at the scene. The fire took more than three hours to get under control.

mary.gail.hare@baltsun.com

steve.kilar@baltsun.com

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