Girl, 7, dies days after Maple Shade apartment fire that claimed brother's life
MAPLE SHADE, N.J. - A second child has tragically passed away days after a fire at a Maple Shade apartment complex claimed the life of their sibling.
Hope Marles, 7, succumbed to her injuries sustained in the May 7 fire at the Fox Meadow Apartment Complex. The same fire also claimed the life of her older brother, 12-year-old Alan John Marles.
Their mother remains in the hospital and is in stable condition.
Fire crews responded to the complex on the unit block of Adams Drive around 10:30 p.m. that evening. When crews arrived on the scene the found heavy smoke and flames coming from the roof of the apartments.
Responding police officers began evacuating residents as firefighters battled the flames. Ultimately, six people were taken to area hospitals for treatment.
A total of 16 apartment units were damaged. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
Officials say organs and tissue from both children were donated to the Gift of Life Donor Program.
A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to support the family.
In the wake of the tragic fire, volunteers have spent their time collecting donations for the 22 displaced families. The Maple Shade School District set up a donation site, and Columbia Bank is accepting cash donations.
"This community comes together like a family when people need it," Township Manager Susan Danson said.