Two Children Pulled From Burning Apartment

SPOKANE VALLEY — Two toddlers were injured in a Spokane Valley apartment fire Tuesday night but, thanks to the help of neighbors, will survive the ordeal.

The fire broke out shortly before 10 p.m. in the 12400 block of E. 8th. The children’s mother was in the shower at the time and was able to get out safely but her young kids – Trinity and Tristan – were trapped in the burning apartment.

A pair of neighbors got in through a window to rescue the children but found that Tristan was not breathing when they brought him outside. Thankfully, firefighters were able to resuscitate him.

“I’d seen Crystal, who was my neighbor, and her kids inside on the second floor, somewhere,” nearby resident Alex Suchanek said. “Me and another guy shimmied up the side of the house, and went in there and got them. One of them wasn’t breathing when we got them, and we just lowered them down to my dad. They had all of this stuff coming out of their nose, they were covered in black soot and stuff, and it was really scary. Just really back and dark in there.”

He said his main focus was just getting the kids out.

“That was my main concern was the kids,” Suchanek said. “I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t do anything, just at least try to do something.”

Another neighbor, John Higginson, took the mother to the hospital. When he returned to the apartment complex, Higginson relayed information from doctors that the children will be OK.

On Wednesday morning, both Tristan and Trinity Burris were upgraded to satisfactory condition. Both had been in critical condition shortly after the blaze.

The mother was treated and released. Investigators interviewed her Wednesday and continued looking into what may have caused the fire. They said it looks like it started in a room where one of the toddlers was sleeping.