FORDHAM HEIGHTS, the Bronx (AP, PIX11) — A Bronx community gathered Sunday to pay its final respects to perished loved ones, a week after a fire filled a high-rise apartment building with thick, suffocating smoke that killed 17 people, including eight children.

A funeral service took place Sunday morning at the Islamic Cultural Center on East 166th Street in the Bronx. Those buried Sunday all have ties to Gambia in West Africa.

Burial services were held for two children, Seydou Toure, 12, and sister Haouwa Mahamadou, 5, earlier in the week at a mosque in Harlem.

“This is a sad situation. But everything comes from God. Tragedies always happen, we just thank Allah that we can all come together,” said Haji Dukuray, the uncle of Haja Dukuray, who died with three of her children and her husband.

In total, 17 people died after suffocating while trying to escape the building through a smoke-filled stairwell.

Others remain in hospitals because of smoke inhalation.

A malfunctioning space heater sparked the fire in a third-floor apartment, and smoke quickly rose up the stairwell of the 19-story building.

Dozens of people were displaced as a result of the blaze.

Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson announced Friday each household would receive $2,250. They also secured 125 air purifiers that will be delivered to each household.

Gibson also said she and other local leaders are working with landlords to relocate residents, at no cost to them, and that that could take another week or more.  

The 17 people who lost their lives ranged in age from 2 to 50. 

There were 15 caskets in all that lined the front of the prayer hall on Sunday. They ranged in size — some no bigger than small coffee tables, containing the bodies of the youngest souls who died.

After Sunday’s services in New York City, 11 caskets were to be transported to a cemetery in New Jersey for burial. Four of the victims were expected to be repatriated to Gambia, as requested by their families, a Gambian government official attending the service said.