By Mike Hellgren

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Three adults and three children are dead after fast-moving flames ravaged their rowhouse.

Mike Hellgren has more.

This is the deadliest fire in Baltimore this year and the people who owned the home destroyed by the fire, the Satterfields, have lived there for decades.  They were the heart of the community.

Wind made it difficult for firefighters to battle the flames.  Strong winds fanned smoke and flames in East Baltimore, killing Eleanor and Richard Satterfield, an elderly couple, and their granddaughter and three great-grandchildren, ages one, three and nine.

“Lovely people.  Heaven just welcomed new angels,” said James Johnson.

The smoke and fire combined with strong winds made fighting the fire tough.  It spread to three other rowhomes.  Those who saw the flames will never forget them.

“I had more smoke in my house than fire, but the other two houses were just in flames,” said Shirley Braxton.  “Everything was just on fire.”

The fire department is unsure whether the home had working smoke detectors.  Investigators are still working to determine the cause.

“Exactly what started the fire, we don’t know at this point.  Our fire investigators and police arson detectors are here on the scene and they have begun their preliminary investigation into the cause of this fire,” said Kevin Cartwright.

The department also responded to concerns that a nearby fire company was not on the scene due to rotating, budget-related closures, noting the response was quick, at three minutes.

“I don’t think there are words to describe how devastating this is for their family.  I don’t think there’s ever a good time of year to lose family; the holidays make it particularly difficult,” said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.

A memorial has started to go up for the six victims around the mess that’s left behind.

The city is working to get those displaced into hotels.  The Red Cross is also helping those who are homeless. 

Crisis teams were on hand at Cecil Elementary, where one of the victims was a student. 

Eighteen people have died in fires citywide this year.

Comments (23)
  1. Jasmin C. says:

    omg! y do these things happen?! well everyone just keep praying and things will get better. = )

  2. Ken says:

    Such a sad tradgedy.

  3. Danielle says:

    This is such a tragedy.. I have know this family all of my life.. They were apart of our Homewood Family.. Im praying for the rest of the family because this is truly a heavy load to carry…

  4. T says:

    This is so unfortunate. During the winter months it seems as though homes are more prone to fires. I hope that everyone takes the time to install working smoke/CO2 detectors in their homes. I know the Baltimore City Fire Dept. issued smoke detectors for city residents. Please people, take the time to install working smoke detectors in your homes. Working detectors can be a great benefit everyone in the home.

  5. chris says:

    Such a sad tragedy but especially hard this time of year. It always ways heavy on firefighters hearts when children are involved in this kind of tragedy. May god be with the family during this difficult time

  6. Kim says:

    I am saddened by this tragedy. My daughter goes to Cecil and is best friends with one of the victims. I will be praying for all who knew this family

    1. Veronica Wheeler says:

      ye LOrd bless the Satterfield family they’ll be in Heaven with Richie dancin around!

  7. Drukeenu Nolan says:

    Myself and the rest of my co-workers are deeply sadened about the tragedy. We know the father of two of the children and we are going to keep him and the rest of his family uplifted in prayer.

  8. cathy wiley says:

    we work with mary satterfield at the save a lot store in parkville and are really sorry for her loss. this is a great tradey and our prayers are with her at this time.

  9. taneka m. says:

    May God Bless The Family Soul R.I.P Tiarra&Family. Class Of 2001 Lake Clifton. Taneka M

  10. Jim Goods says:

    Things happen 4 many reasons that we just don`t understand. We should not try cause in all actuality, we`ll never fully understand. All we can do is keep it in prayer, no matter what faith you follow, God hears sincere hearts when we pray. May God bless the family & friends of this tragady. It will be truly rough at the beginning, but as long as you keep God first, (no matter what faith you follow) things will come together. Stay strong, & stay in prayer.

  11. Drew says:

    It breaks my heart to hear tragedys like this. I will pray for the family and surviving members. Love thy neighbor, help each other. When I look at you I see myself.

  12. chadd says:

    it was my bus drivers family! 😦 he was cryin while driving:(

  13. Desire says:

    although i not long ago met Tiara its so sad to hear about her and her family passing to such a tragic death. I will continue to pray for the family members that will be affected by this for years to come. May your souls rest peacefully with the LORD.

  14. Keyshia says:

    Christo who ever you are, go back to hell where you originated!

  15. Viola Hughes says:


    Sorry for Your Lost

  16. Wanda says:

    So sorry to hear about your lost my Prayers are with this family at this time of lost.

  17. patrice says:

    Is there somewhere that is collecting money for their funerals?

  18. Dane says:

    R.I.P. Tiara Gholston and your sweet babies! GOD love you all!

  19. heather lee-boyd says:


  20. Lakeisha Johnson says:

    Yes its so sad to hear about any loss esp.around the holidays. May god be with this family in their times of need throughout the coming years. My deepest sympathy and heart felt condolence goes out to them all. May god bless and continue to keep them strong

  21. Tanya D. Harford county says:

    Sometimes I just don’t know why these horrible things happen to people, especially children. I pray gods love protected them from the pain. When I seen the pic of Tiara & her beautiful babies I just cried. This family will remain in my heart for a long time. May their faith in god help the family with this tragic loss. God Bless.

  22. tranaye says:

    Im so angry my family no. They were so good I love u Daelyn Darryon Tiara Amari Mr.Richard and Mrs. Elnora
    May u R.I.P
    I love u family

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

More From CBS Baltimore

Track Weather On The Go With Our App!
CBS All Access

Watch & Listen LIVE