MARYVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A house fire has claimed the lives of three people Friday morning, according to the Blount County Sheriff’s Office. It happened in the 4800 block of Sevierville Road/U.S. Highway 411, about halfway between Seymour and Maryville.

Sheriff James Lee Berrong said the Blount County firefighters responded to the scene around 7:15 a.m. on Jan. 7. Firefighters were on the scene in less than five minutes after the call was dispatched and found a home fully engulfed in flames, Berrong said.

Mark Madrigal lives just two doors down and said he woke up to see the whole thing unfold.

“We opened the door and stood on the porch and looked over to where we could see, at first we didn’t see the smoke but we just saw the lights from like the cops or ambulances. we heard a bunch of ambulances too.”

He added, “We saw smoke coming out of the windows and then the glass started to break.”

Firefighters found three victims inside who were taken by ambulance to the hospital. All three died as a result of their injuries. Madrigal said he didn’t know his neighbors that well.

Kevin Yanick on the other hand said he remembers the last conversation with them.

“it was terrible news for the neighborhood.”

Yanick said he didn’t see the fire happen but he heard about the news later in the day, “We lost a good family last night, some good people, and that’s heartbreaking.”

“It’s sad that it had to end like this,” he added. “I just hate to say goodbye that way.”

The identities of the victims are not being released pending notification of next of kin and autopsies that will be performed at the Knox County Regional Forensic Center. Members of the Blount County Fire Investigation Response Team are working to determine the cause and origin of the blaze.

Fourteen firefighters and eight fire trucks responded to the call.

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