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'They put a smile on my face': Mourners remember toddlers killed in West Baltimore house fire

Keyona Weaver, in red and holding a camera, is surrounded by friends and family Tuesday night during a vigil for her young son and daughter who died in a house fire last week in West Baltimore.
Keyona Weaver, in red and holding a camera, is surrounded by friends and family Tuesday night during a vigil for her young son and daughter who died in a house fire last week in West Baltimore. (Tim Prudente / Baltimore Sun)

As Keyona Weaver lay in the hospital recovering from childbirth, the fire started back home. Flames spread through her family’s West Baltimore rowhouse, filling with deadly black smoke the room with her two toddlers.

The children, Lamont and Jaliyah Wilson, would never know their new brother. They died after the fire Friday, with their mother at the hospital after the birth of their brother, Isaiah.

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Weaver’s sister had watched the children and she screamed for help out the windows when the fire started.

Mourners gathered in the cold to remember the children Tuesday night. Weaver, 30, still sore from childbirth, stepped slowly, beneath the burned out windows of the rowhouse on North Mount Street in Sandtown-Winchester.

“My kids … it’s so hard. I had so many memories,” Weaver told the crowd, her voice breaking. “I woke up at 7:30 every morning and they put a smile on my face until the time they went to bed.”

The crowd sang and prayed. They cupped the flickering flames with their shivering hands.

The children, 1 and 2 years old, suffered cardiac arrest, firefighters said. They continue to investigate the cause.

Weaver’s sister was also hospitalized with injuries that were not life-threatening.

Baltimore fire officials say two children were killed in a fire Friday evening in the city.

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