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Pregnant woman who escaped deadly Bronx fire released from hospital, mourns loved ones

BELMONT, the Bronx — Monday night's candlelight vigil for the victims of the deadly Bronx fire was especially difficult for Kadian Blake.

The pregnant mother, who just got out the hospital, was the last person to make it down the fire escape of the burning building alive.

Her silent tears spoke volumes.

Blake sobbed for her aunt and three cousins she lost in last Thursday night's fire — one of the deadliest the Bronx has seen in decades.

Karen Francis, 37; Kylie Francis, 2; Kelesha Francis, 7; and Shawntay Young, 19, were four of 12 people who died in the blaze.

"It's like when are we going to wake up, you know? When is this nightmare going to be over? Is this for real?"

The fire at 2363 Prospect Avenue was one of the worst in recent New York City.

Blake was asleep in her apartment with her husband when her young son sounded the alarm.

"He said, 'mommy, I smell smoke,'" Blake recalled.

With thick smoke in the air and flames inching closer, there was no time to check on their relatives in neighboring apartments.

"We couldn’t breathe, it was crazy," Blake said. "When we went on the fire escape, everybody was going down. Everyone had passed us we were the last ones who came down from the fire escape and when I looked up I said, there's no way my aunt can – can get down."

On Monday night during the candlelight vigil, Blake and her surviving relatives held onto each other, their cries carrying up into the Winter sky as they honored their loved ones.

A GoFundMe page has been set up for the family:

https://www.gofundme.com/francisyoung-bronx-fire-mem-fund