Friends, family remember 9-year-old killed in Christmas Eve house fire

Vigil for nine-year-old killed in house fire
Published: Dec. 27, 2021 at 12:30 AM EST
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Nearly 100 people gathered to comfort one another and remember a 9-year-old boy found dead in a house fire on Christmas Eve.

Amare Lockett was found in a second-story bedroom after his home burned on Christmas Eve morning.

“I’m grateful that my grandson wasn’t taken in the streets, or sickened by an illness they couldn’t control. We just hope he didn’t feel any suffering like we are feeling now,” says Mark Lockett, Amare’s grandfather. “Nine years old. He’ll never be forgotten.”

“He was very energetic. Everybody knew exactly who Amare was from the time he was born until the time he passed,” says Amare’s aunt Tilia Lockett.

“He was a little old man‚” says Amare’s aunt Francis.

On the pile of rubble where the house once stood, family members built a memorial to Amare and cried. They also gave thanks for those who survived the blaze.

“Look for the blessings in this tragedy, y’all. I could have lost a whole family,” says Mark.

Amare’s parents, two siblings, and cousin all survived the fire. His parents are still in the hospital as of Sunday evening, but they are expected to be OK.

The family praised the heroism of Amare’s cousin, 19-year-old Lamanuel Lawrence, who saved Amare’s brother’s life.

“His hands are burnt, his face is burnt, he just got off life support with that, but he got them out of there. Thank God for him,” says Amare’s grandmother.

The family’s home was leveled. They lost everything except each other and their faith.

“God is gonna get us through this pain that we’re going through. Jesus, we’re going to be OK, and we’re going to keep on praying and everything’s going to be OK,” says Amare’s cousin, Tara Lawrence.

The community has been donating toiletries, clothing, and other necessities to get the family back on their feet.

The cause of the blaze is under investigation. There were working smoke detectors in the home.

If you would like to donate to the Lockett family, you can give to their GoFundMe, or contact Amare’s aunt, Diamond Lockett at

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