Two bodies recovered from a house that caught fire near Bemidji on Thursday have been identified by family as sisters AceLynn Seelye, 6, and RaeLynn Seelye, 5.
A GoFundMe post by Kayla Stellick said the girls were spending the night with their grandmother so their mother, Amber Kramer, could wrap presents and prepare for Christmas. In her post, Stellick, who is Kramer’s sister, said the girls “meant everything to Amber.”
The campaign has already raised more than $20,000, which Stellick said will be used to help with funeral costs and to support Kramer, who does not work as she cares for her surviving three sons.
Hannah Baird of Cass Lake said her 6-year-old daughter, Amiyah, was best friends with AceLynn. The two girls were in the same first-grade class and did gymnastics together.
“It’s really horrible,” Baird said. “We wish we could help in any way.” Added Amiya of AceLynn: “I really miss her.”
The blaze was reported at 6:10 a.m. Thursday about 13 miles northwest of Bemidji in Liberty Township, the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office said.
Nearly four dozen firefighters with 16 pieces of equipment from numerous fire departments brought the blaze in the two-story home under control, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Authorities haven’t said how the fire started.