GRAY, Ky. -- Gino Cima raced to a house as it was engulfed by flames in rural Kentucky, frantically trying to save his nephew, his nephew's pregnant fiancee and five young children inside. But he was too late: He found his nephew's body near a side door, laying in a way that suggested the man had been trying to rescue the sleeping children.
Before coming upon his nephew's body and that of the man's fiancee, he said he screamed to firefighters: "There's babies in that house!"
Cima said Sunday that he arrived within minutes of hearing of the Saturday morning blaze.
"When I opened the screen door, she was laying at the door with her head to the door. And I pulled her out," he said, speaking softly. "And about 2 feet from her laying the other way was (my nephew). And I went in and got him and pulled him out. But they was done gone. There wasn't nothing I could do."
He said he then raced to the front of the house to try to save the children.
"And that's when they had the five babies laying out in the front yard," he said.
The Knox County coroner and state police have not yet identified the victims, but family members said the five children killed ranged in age from 10 months to 3 years.
Relatives said the nephew's fiance was the mother of three of the children who died. The other two children were siblings and friends of the family, visiting for the night for a sleepover, the relatives said.