Parents grieve loss of children ahead of Father's Day

COLUMBUS, Ohio (FOX) — A grieving family is spending Father's Day weekend facing unimaginable loss.

Nine-year-old Kathryn and her 12-year-old brother Aaron were on their first summer vacation away from their parents when tragedy struck.

"'[They said] we're having a great time dad.' And I said 'I love you my little ducklings. We'll see you soon.'" said Bryan Foster.

He would soon learn that he would never get to hug or hold his children again.

"That was the last text or video I ever received from them."

The kids were staying with family in Columbus, hundreds of miles away from their home in Minnesota. They spent two weeks having the trip of a lifetime with their grandmother in Worthington.

They decided to stay one extra night for a sleepover at their aunt's home on Walmar Drive in North Linden.

Around 6:00 a.m. the next morning, a fire broke out in the basement. The aunt and an adult cousin made it out of the home. The children were trapped inside. Neighbors heard their screams and tried to save them, but the fire moved so fast that within minutes their screams turned to silence.

Hours later, Bryan Foster says there was a knock on his door in St. Paul. "It was an officer and a priest. They told me to sit down."

Bryan and his ex-wife Laura, shocked and devastated, traveled to Ohio filled with questions and grief.

On Friday, they went through the painful process of walking through the burned out home where their children died.

Outside, a makeshift memorial filled with balloons, bears and flowers is wrapped around a tree.

He says Kathryn was a creative girl, an artist like her mom. Aaron liked to ride his bike and hang out with friends. However, both kids loved spending time with each other more than anything.

"Aaron and Kathryn were so very very close. I have never in my life seen two siblings closer."

He is suffering in ways he could never imagine but says he knows one thing for sure.

"I will not let my children's memory ever die and will bring lessons they taught me to anyone that they can touch and I will share their stories. They will never be forgotten, ever. They will always be right here with me."

A private memorial service for family will be held in Ohio this weekend. Bryan and Laura will take the children's remains back to Minnesota and hold a memorial at the children's favorite park ob July2nd.

A fund has been set up for the family at Fifth-Third Bank under "Walmar Fire Memorial."

There is also a verified Go Fund Me Page for donations.

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