Toddler and grandmother perished in fire - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Toddler and grandmother perished in fire

By Janice Broach - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

BOLIVAR, TN (WMC-TV) - A grandmother and her 16-month-old grandson died in a house fire Monday in Hardeman County.
         
Tina Franklin and her grandson D.J. perished in the blaze, which investigators say may have been sparked by faulty wiring in an air conditioning unit.

A makeshift memorial of teddy bears, balloons and messages lines the front of Tina Franklin's duplex. 

The five people on the other side escaped the fire unharmed.

Franklin's daughter is grieving for her mother and her little boy. She says she went to the store Monday. When she returned, the house was engulfed in flames.

Tina Franklin's son, Antowaun McKinnie, tried in vain to save his mother and nephew.

"I saw the front part of the house was on fire, so, I ran to the back 'cause I knew my mother was somewhere toward the back," he said.

But the smoke was too thick to enter.

He said his mother almost made it out of the house.

"She went back to get the baby because she wouldn't leave the baby behind. I consider my Momma a hero," he said.

Tina Franklin's family says she was a wonderful, kind person, and little D.J. was one of a kind.

The Bolivar fire chief said the official cause of the fire has not yet been determined and the investigation continues.

Tina Franklin and her grandson will be buried Saturday.

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