Father's tragic reaction after four children die in Melbourne house fire

·3-min read

Neighbours of the family who tragically lost four children in a horrific house fire over the weekend have recalled hearing their father screaming "save my children" as the house was engulfed in flames.

Two boys, aged 10 and 3, and two girls, 6 and 1, were killed when a fire broke out at the Werribee property in Melbourne's southwest around 1am on Sunday. 

Neighbours recalled the heart-wrenching reactions of Najm and Khadija Osman after they realised four of their children were still inside the house. 

The parents managed to escape the blaze with their eight-year-old son.

A photo showing four young children with tracksuits on smiling at  the camera. A man and younger child are standing to the right but with faces blurred.
Four children died in the tragic Melbourne house fire. Source: GoFundMe

Community grieves the loss of 'young and beautiful' four children

According to 9News, shocked neighbours said they could hear the father of five screaming for his children.

"The dad keeps on shouting, 'my kids, my kids are gone'," one neighbour recounted, another adding the family "openly wailed" on the street.

The outlet reported that CCTV footage captured the family and neighbours fighting to control the blaze.

The family's next door neighbour Geeta Deagan told the Herald Sun that Mr Osman banged on their door as the house burned, telling her and her husband, "my children are dead".

"She [Ms Osman] came to me and said, ‘they are not going to come back … my four kids died, I’m not a good mum, I’m not a good mum'," she told the publication.

“I just gave her a hug … there was nothing she could do.”

Other neighbours reported hearing Mr Osman screaming “save my children."

Mr Osman’s sister Hala, said the tragic incident has "broken her heart."

Flowers leaning against a temporary fence.
Grieving neighbours have left flowers outside the family's house. Source: ABC

A GoFundMe page that was set up to help cover funeral and memorial services for the family described the four young children as "young, bright and beautiful" who were "full of life and love."

"[They] had the most infectious smiles and radiated such a light that could illuminate the deepest and darkest of places," the crowdfunding organiser Fathi Ahmed wrote.

"It has also left a mother, father and a son, mourning the loss of their family, a 10 year-old and three-year-old boy and a six and one-year-old girl. 

"The family, friends and communities of this beautiful family are also extremely devastated and in complete agony by this sudden and unexplainable tragedy which has left many imploding with unbearable pain."

The GoFundMe page has raised more than $120,000 in less than 24 hours.

Fire crews felt 'a little bit helpless' 

It took more than 30 firefighters just under an hour to bring the fire under control, with the house completely destroyed.

Werribee fire brigade Lieutenant Damien Molloy said when crews arrived the property was "very well alight".

"Fire had already broken through the roof and was already coming out the front door," he told reporters on Sunday.

Lt Molloy said fire crews felt "in a way, a little bit helpless" because they wanted to get into the house to find the children.

A red brick home with green bushes and flowers out the front and emergency services seen in the background.
Emergency services were called to the house in Werribee in Melbourne on Sunday morning. Source: AAP

"The fire itself we have seen many times before, but the complexity involves having four children trapped inside the house," he said.

"We're not wanting to put ourselves at that level of risk to have, what was likely to be, a recovery situation from the outset."

Victoria Police arson and explosives detectives are investigating the cause of the fire and will prepare a report for the coroner.

Detective Senior Sergeant Ashley Ryan said on Sunday he could not yet say whether the fire was suspicious.

With AAP

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