GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — A father says his life has been ripped apart following the death of his wife and three daughters in a fire early Saturday morning.
Alexander Diaz was the proud father of 6-year-old Alexa, 4-year-old Ashelyn, and 1-year-old Daniela who died along with his wife in a mobile home fire in Gwinnett's Smoke Creek community around 2 a.m.
Fire crews tried to rescue the victims but were unable to get them out in time. They said bystanders tried to go inside and rescue the family, as well, but heat and smoke quickly overcame them and they were forced to back down.
"All four of them went away in the blink of an eye," Diaz said. "They were my pride and joy. I am broken inside knowing that I could not save them and keep them safe."
Photos of the girls shared by Diaz show three happy, energetic sisters who family members said loved school and playing together.
Diaz started a GoFundMe account to help raise money for funeral expenses.
Fire investigators are still working to determine the cause of the fire but said that the bulk of the fire damage appeared to be in the back of the mobile home as it advanced to the front. In an update on Saturday, fire officials also said that the fire was already heavily involved when they arrived with flames through the roof.
They took the opportunity in the statement to urge families to have working smoke alarms in their home and have an escape plan in the event of a house fire so that they can get out safely.