PORTLAND, Ore. — A third victim has died from this summer’s massive fire at the Heidi Manor Apartments near Northeast 22nd and Weidler. Investigators have confirmed that the fire early on the morning of July 4th was sparked by fireworks. At least three others were injured.
Robert Gremillion and Seth Thompson, both 31, died in the fire.
25-year-old Kelsi Edmonds jumped from about 30 feet to escape the flames. She suffered burns on more than 65% of her body and had been hospitalized with critical injuries for the past three months. Her family announced her passing on Sunday.
She lived with the men who died. Thompson was her boyfriend.
The apartment complex is made up of three separate buildings. The fire destroyed all but one.
Witnesses reported that fireworks had been set off in the area. Fireworks were banned at the time due to the heat and dry conditions. City officials said anybody responsible for property damage or worse would be help accountable.
“The magnitude of this fire moved so quick that people had little time to escape and many did not. This is a tragic day for our City. I want to first acknowledge the pain and suffering of the victims and their families. I also want to praise the heroic efforts of the firefighters and residents that worked together to save so many victims under extreme conditions. If not for their efforts there would be a much greater loss,” said Portland Fire Chief Sara Boone.
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty visited the scene to show their support.
My deepest sympathies go out to the families and loved ones of those who lost their lives and to those who lost their homes and possessions.
— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) July 5, 2021
I also want to thank all the first responders that were on scene fighting the fire and searching for residents. Their bravery saved lives and prevented the fire from destroying a 3rd building.
— Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty (@JoAnnPDX) July 4, 2021
Anyone with information about the fire is asked to contact Detective Meredith Hopper at (503) 793-9271 or [email protected]