Overnight fire in Chester claims 3 lives

July 8, 2008 5:38:56 AM PDT
A blaze claimed the lives of three people in Chester, Delaware County overnight. It happened at a home in the 2300 block of West Third Street. Tragically, the woman's boyfriend tried to save her and her nearly 3-year-old daughter from the raging flames.

Many were remembering 29-year-old Edward Lane today, who according to a witness rushed into the burning house to try to save his 23-year-old girlfriend Shanae Bailey and her 3-year-old daughter I'Nayjae.

Minutes before Lane had dropped the mother and young daughter off at the small frame house. Authorities say he and a friend drove away only to get a cell phone call minutes later from Bailey saying the house was burning.

Lane returned.

Btln. Chief Charles Bolgunas of the Chester Fire Department tells Action News, "His friend states he tried to come back and make the rescue. The friend stayed outside and dialed 911 while he ran inside and tried to assist them. But he never made it back out, unfortunately."

A memorial made of teddy bears grew today as friends and family grieved. Those who knew Eddie long were not surprised by the news he ran into the burning house, saying he was generous and thought of others.

Lisa Bailey, Shanae's cousin says, "They could not find the baby because of the smoke. You know how the smoke just take over, so that's why they say stay low. And, he never came back out."

Shanae Bailey's aunt, Crystal Smith, says the 23-year-old adored her little girl who was, "A beautiful doll, a beautiful doll... she harmed nobody, and neither did Shanae... and I want to know why they are not here."

Authorities say there is an ongoing investigation into the cause. A dog trained to search for evidence of arson was brought in this morning. It's not clear if anything was detected.