CAHOKIA, Ill. (AP) – Flames raced through a home in this St. Louis suburb early Friday, killing a mother and her three children, authorities said.

Neighbors said they had to restrain the woman’s boyfriend to keep him from running into the burning home to save them.

The woman, Yuasheika Douglas, was 32, the St. Clair County coroner’s office said. Her children were identified as daughters Tamadja Morgan, 11, and Taikia Morgan, 10, and their 9-year-old brother Tyrique Morgan.

Neighbors said the boyfriend told them he had left the house to run a brief errand and returned to find it ablaze shortly after midnight. Much of the home’s roof was destroyed and the front awnings were melted.

The four bodies were found inside, firefighter Chris Burch said.

Douglas’ boyfriend was restrained in the front yard and repeatedly screamed – “My family, my family!” – said Fletcher Richardson, who lives across the street.

“It was just tragic,” Richardson said.

Patti Thompson, a spokeswoman for the Illinois State Fire Marshal’s office handling the case, said the fire did not appear to be suspicious.

The woman worked as a nurse while raising the three children and attending school, said Tomicia Taylor, who said she was a family friend.


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