Two-Year-Old Dies In Muskogee House Fire

Monday, July 19th 2010, 1:13 pm
By: News On 6

By Craig Day, The News On 6

MUSKOGEE, OK -- A house fire killed a child in Muskogee Monday morning.

It happened on the west side of town. Family members, police and firefighters all tried to get to the two-year-old trapped inside the burning home, but couldn't reach him in time.

Just before 9:30 a.m., a 911 call came in saying there was a fire at the small house on South 30th in Muskogee.  Officers got there first and were told a child was still inside.

"They were unable to get to the area where the child was," said Corporal Pedro Zardeneta, Muskogee Police Department. "The fire department arrived, they were able to fight the fire back to get back there and that's where they found the body of a two-and-a-half year old child."

Three adults, including the victim's mother, and a seven-year-old boy were able to make it out safely. Firefighters found the body of Kaydeen Stepp in a back bedroom.

"He said you could hear him calling Bubba, Bubba," said Cathey Gardenhire, Kaydeen grandmother. "And then you didn't hear nothing no more."

Cathey Gardenhire is the Kaydeen's grandmother. Her heart is broken.

"It's broke," she said. "I don't know what I'm going to do."

Jim Humphrey, who lives across the street, is saddened by the death. He often saw Kaydeen playing in the yard.

"We just hate it that the baby lost his life," Humphrey said.

Fire Marshal's are working to determine the cause of the fire, but family members say it may have been caused by a sibling playing with a lighter.

"He would call me ma-ma, because he couldn't say grandma.  Gardenhire said. "And I wouldn't let him spend the night because he wasn't potty trained."

While the family is left grieving a terrible loss, Kaydeen's body has been sent to the medical examiner's office to determine the cause of death.

The American Red Cross is helping the family.