Boy killed in fierce Rahway house fire; four others injured

Flames ripped through a Rahway home without working smoke detectors, killing a boy and sending four others to the hospital Sunday, according to authorities.

Fire officials believe a candle started the deadly fire on the second-floor of the one-family house. Firefighters rushed to the scene around 5 a.m. where they rescued an unconscious 16-year-old girl and Alex Cortez. Cortez was later pronounced dead at the scene while the girl was taken to the hospital in serious condition. Authorities say an older adult and two other people with lesser burns were also transported to medical facilities.

Neighbors stood by grieving the boy and praying for others pulled from the fire. Robert Irvin fought back tears as he described watching firefighters pull his young neighbor from the house. Cortez?s friends remember playing football and basketball with him.

Authorities say the fire may have gone undetected for hours because the smoke detector did not have batteries. Firefighters gutted the home due to the heavy damage.

sorry to interrupt
your first 5 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 5 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 5 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login, create an account or subscribe to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."