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Fundraiser for family who lost four children in house fire reaches $150,000

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Donations continue to pour in for the Coats family of Monroe County, who lost four children to a house fire.

A Go Fund Me page set up Friday had an initial goal of $100,000, which was met in one day. As of Tuesday afternoon, some 1,900 donors had contributed nearly $150,000. The fundraising cap has now been increased to $175,000.

The Sparta Area Fire District has not officially confirmed the names of the victims and homeowners, but the Go Fund Me page and a Facebook page belonging to one of the parents identified them as the Coats family.

Fire crews arrived at 3679 Backtrail Road shortly after 9 p.m. last Thursday following a report of a house fire with people trapped upstairs and unable to escape. One child, who was on a lower floor, was able to flee and went to a neighbor’s home to make an emergency call.

Firefighters attempted to enter the home but were unable to due to intense heat, smoke and flames. The second floor collapsed during the fire and four children and pets were found deceased on the first floor once firefighters were able to conduct a search.

Both parents and one additional child survived; it has not been made public if they were in the vicinity at the time of the fire.

Investigators from the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office and the state fire marshal’s office are looking into the cause of the fire. No additional information has been released as of Tuesday afternoon.

To donate to the Go Fund Me account for the family, visit shorturl.at/rsvS1.

Emily Pyrek can be reached at emily.pyrek@lee.net.

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