Neighbors, family react after fire kills 2 in West Hempfield Township


WEST HEMPFIELD TWP., Pa (WHTM) – Neighbors are trying to help the family who suffered so much loss in a fire Saturday night on Marietta Avenue in West Hempfield Township.

The Lancaster County Coroner says Sabine LaBarriere, 40, also known as Vanessa, and her mother, Marie Dorcena, 79, were killed in that fire.

“It’s devastating,” said Dianna Zimmerman, who lives across the street from where the fire happened. “They lost everything, their mom, their grandmother, and all of their belongings, everything.”

Sabine’s husband, Paul, who was at work when the fire happened, says his 18-year-old daughter was burned all over her body when she tried to rush in save her family members.

Firefighters say the family’s set of 12-year-old twins were able to escape the fire.

Zimmerman said she is devastated this all happened.

“They were our best neighbors,” Zimmerman said. “They were so sweet. Every time I saw Vanessa she’d yell across the road and one of us would go to one of us each other’s house and we’d hug and talk and laugh. She was sweet.”

Jeff Perry also lives next to the family.

Perry told ABC 27 News that he heard the screams of the children when the fire was happening.

“It was not a fun experience,” Perry said. “It’s nothing I want to live to see again.”

Perry and his girlfriend are collecting donations for the family. They hope giftcards and clothes can help with healing.

“They don’t have their mother anymore,” Perry said. “It’s terrifying to think this could happen to anybody.”

Firefighters are still looking into the cause of the fire, but believe it started in the basement.

A West Hempfield Township Firefighter was hurt when fighting the fire when he fell through the floor of the home. That firefighter is out of the hospital.

The West Hempfield Township Fire Department is partnering with Trio Bar and Grill for an event on March 8th to raise money for the family.

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