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Community aims to help fire victims in Plymouth

A community in Luzerne County is coming together after a tragic fire claimed the life of a little girl.

PLYMOUTH, Pa. — Messages of love on a piece of plywood are accompanied by balloons, candles, and stuffed animals in a memorial set up for six-year-old Ameliya Witten, who died after breathing in too much smoke when her house caught fire on Palmer Street on Sunday morning.

"I can't imagine the pain of a mother going into that because I have two kids of my own. And I was scared and nervous," neighbor Jessika Figueroa said. "That could have been my kid."

How fast the fire spread was surprising to neighbors and first responders. Firefighters said the home was engulfed in flames when they arrived on the scene, just two minutes after getting the call out.

"Oh my god, it was just so scary to look at. This wasn't like my first experience of actually seeing a fire in person the way it was, and it just spread it so fast. No one knew what to do," Figueroa said.

Neighbors on the block said the community is tight-knit. And now, they are collecting donations to try and replace some of the items these families lost. But they lost everything.

"We'll put anything as clothes-wise, toys, kitchen appliances for the victims of the fire," Figueroa said.

The donations are not only for Ameliya's family, whose home was leveled by the flames but are also for the neighbors next door in this double-block home that will have to be torn down.

Figueroa said she is also putting together a collection at the Family Dollar in Plymouth.

"It affects everybody. Honestly, you may not even know the family; you don't even have to know them. It would affect you because it's in your neighborhood," Figueroa said. "It's on your block; it could be down the street from your house; it will still affect you because you walk by it. You see it every day."

Visit the Witten family's GoFundMe here

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