The heartbroken sister of a teenage girl who died in a house fire desperately battled to save her, sustaining serious burns as she heard her sister’s bloodcurdling screams.
Sisters Monica, 18, and Drewicilla Fry, 19, were inside their home in Angle Park, in Adelaide’s north-west, at about 2.30pm on Friday when a blaze broke out in Monica’s bedroom.
Their grandmother Jennifer Hannam has revealed Drewicilla was in the kitchen at the back of the house when it began filling with smoke and ran to her sister’s room but the door was closed.
Neighbours managed to rescue Drewicilla from the blaze before emergency services arrived at the scene.
They splashed water onto their face as the distraught woman cried and desperately called for her sister still trapped inside.
Witnesses managed to rescue Drewicilla Fry (pictured) from the blaze. The distraught sister was taken to hospital and is being treated for burns to her hands and face
‘By the time she’d come to the front room, to try and get Monica out of the room, it was too late,’ Ms Hannam told The Advertiser.
‘She said she could hear poor Monica screaming but she just couldn’t get her out of the room.
‘She burned her face and hands trying to get her out of the room.’
The grieving grandmother laid flowers at the Murray Street home on Saturday in memory of Monica as Drewicilla recovers in hospital from burns.
Ms Hannam is trying not to ‘fall to pieces’ as she remembered Monica as a young girl with a bubbly personality.
‘(Monica) is a very bubbly type child, she’s always been sort of outgoing and loving,’ she said.
‘But she was also relatively quiet.’
Before the tragedy, the sisters had been getting their lives on track after years in foster care.
The pair lived in seperate foster homes until Drewicilla was old enough to leave the foster system and move into the home, with Monica following soon after.
Monica (pictured) tragically died after she became trapped inside the home
The girls’ grandmother Jennifer Hannam (pictured) described her Monica has having a bubbly personality and said her sister tried everything to get her out of the burning room
She added the girls’ mum and older sister are at the Royal Adelaide Hospital with Drewicilla who is ‘very distraught’.
Horrified neighbours said Drewicilla emerged from the house desperately calling for her sister and crying hysterically as the fire took hold.
‘I was at my computer and I heard yelling and screaming,’ one resident told Nine News.
‘After that, smoke came inside the house and I thought ‘what the hell is going on?’.’
Neighbour Stasie Leonard raced outside after she smelled smoke and heard a ‘huge bang’.
‘I saw smoke and heard another bang,’ she said. ‘Flames were rushing out the window.’
‘Someone was going: ‘there’s someone still inside’,’ she said. ‘It’s just been chaos, it’s been horrible,’ he said
Peter Seery fought every instinct he had to break the door down and help Monica.
The former CFS volunteer tried desperately to fight the flames with a garden hose until firefighters arrived.
Sisters Monica, 18, and Drewicilla Fry, 19, were inside their home in Angle Park, in Adelaide’s north west, when it caught fire (pictured, firefighters at the scene)
It took 40 minutes for 14 Metropolitan Fire Service firefighters with three vehicles and a command truck to extinguish the blaze.
The Metropolitan Fire Service believe the blaze started in the front room of the Murray Street home, which was completely destroyed with only the structure and frame of the window remaining.
Police are preparing a report for the coroner however Monica’s death is being treated as not suspicious.
An investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.