Baby injured in Monday morning fire - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Baby injured in Monday morning fire

By Nick Kenney - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - A baby was in critical condition Monday after a space heater started a fire as a family tried to keep warm.

The fire happened overnight at a home in the 4100 block of Tomahawk Street.

The child, eight-month-old Christopher Kirkwood, was taken to LeBonheur Children's Medical Center.

"The light of my life," said Christopher's Grandmother, Roadie Orange. "Just got to the place where he's learning to crawl. Just starting to chatting a little bit with me. So we have a good time together. He's my baby."

Monday, he was in the hospital, suffering from what Orange said were third-degree burns to the right side of his face and body after a small house fire overnight.

By the time firefighters arrived, Christopher's family had already put out the fire.  But the damage was already done.

"The child is critical," said Lt. Wayne Cooke of the Memphis Fire Department.

Investigators say the baby was asleep on a mattress on the floor near a space heater.  The mattress caught fire, and the flames burned Christopher's right side.

According to Orange, the central heat and air in the house has not worked for months, despite repeated calls to the landlord for repair.

"Should have been taken care of long while before," she said.

Monday, Orange said she hopes her grandson recovers, while family friend Talunda Davis called it a cautionary tale.

'Accidents like this do happen," she said.

Family members said code enforcement officers have been to the house to investigate the heating problem in the past.  Officials with the city of Memphis have not yet confirmed that claim.

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