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Wednesday, November 5, 2014

5 Dies in Undas Fires in Manila and Makati

A mother and her three children died in one another’s arms in Manila while a man with autism made the fatal mistake of returning inside his family’s burning house in Makati City as three separate fire incidents blazed through Metro Manila on All Saints’ Day.
Forty-year-old Mary Grace Sundiya and her children Peter Gerrado Jr., 5; Gerald Mark, 3; and Geraly, 1, were reportedly discovered still locked in a tight embrace when they were discovered after a fire gutted around 60 houses of light materials in Binondo, Manila Saturday that also left about 100 families homeless.
In Makati, Troy John Bautista, 26, had already been led out to safety by his sister from their burning bungalow located along Paraiso St., Barangay Pembo but, for no apparent reason, chose to return and get something from his room. He died in the one-hour fire Sunday morning.
Another fire broke out in the same city at 9:25 p.m. Saturday on 18th Ave. in East Rembo that gutted two houses but left no casualty.
The Sundiyas were in their makeshift house located inside an abandoned building in Delpan, Binondo, Manila when the fire broke out.
Authorities said that the cause of the fire could have been a lit candle that was left unattended in one of the houses to give respect to departed relatives in observance of the “Undas” weekend – All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days.
It was also learned that Mary Grace’s husband, Gerardo Sr., had been working the streets of Binondo as a pedicab driver when the fire occurred.
He had reportedly rushed back to the family residence but came too late, arriving to a building that was already totally burned.
And in the midst of all the rubble, Manila firemen reportedly discovered the mother and her three children still with their arms around each other.
The other victims from the Manila fire were identified as Violeta Acleta, 65, who suffered from suffocation; Mary Rose Reyes, 34, second degree burns; Carlito Guevarra, 41, slight injury in the left thigh and Solito Blanca, 32, with degree slight burns.
Makati fire official Segundino Comon reported that the Bautista family was already fast asleep when fire broke out at 2:36 a.m. before dawn Sunday.
The victim, who Comon said was autistic, was actually led out to safety by one of his sisters.
But according to a family member, none of them noticed that Bautista had gone back into the house which was already engulfed in flames by then.
Investigators have yet to confirm the cause of fire that started at Bautista’s room.
The fire reached first alarm and was put out at 3:40 am.
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