Four killed in Rockford fire including baby & middle schooler - – Rockford’s News Leader

Four killed in Rockford fire including baby & middle schooler

Posted: Updated:
Fire crew carrying out toy that survived blaze. Fire crew carrying out toy that survived blaze.

A fire rips through a Rockford home and kills four people include a baby. The blaze started while everyone was sleeping and quickly spread before anyone could help. The family members all died in a second floor of the house unable to escape a growing fire and spreading smoke.


A few children's toys and household goods are all that could be saved from the burnt out home at 1625 10th avenue near Benson Stone Company. Sharon Cashatt, 61, Douglas Cashatt, 21, Sharon's son with special needs, Dominick Cashatt, 13, Sharon's grandson and 10-month-old Isabella Gonzalez, her great-granddaughter all died.  The baby's mother and her uncle managed to escape.


"My sister told me that when we were standing out here that she smelled smoke so she came downstairs and my grandma's Christmas tree was on fire so she went downstairs to get my uncle from the basement and by the time they came back upstairs there was no way to get up the stairs because the whole living room on fire," says Danielle Gonzalez.


By the time fire crews arrived they say they were fighting a losing battle.


"They encountered heavy, heavy fire conditions throughout the whole the entire first floor. The initial caller stated that fire had already been blown through the windows so it had already vented out through the windows and so when our crews got here they made an interior attack but were pushed back by the heavy fire conditions," says Division Chief Matt Knott, Rockford Fire Department.


Fire crews found Sharon with her great-granddaughter.  The baby's mother, Ariel Cashett, now has to live without her.


"Her mother is grieving really bad," says Stephanie Cross. "She has nothing left." 


Crews cannot say for sure yet whether the Christmas tree, which was a real tree, sparked the fire. But they consider the blaze accidental. The home was a total loss and has been torn down. Crews say they don't know if there were any working smoke detectors in the house.


The names of the victims are:

  • 61-year-old Sharon Cashatt
  • 21-year-old Douglas Cashatt
  • 13-year-old Dominick Cashatt
  • 10-month-old Isabella Gonzalez

Sharon was Douglas' mother and Dominick's and Isabella's grandmother. All four victims were found in upstairs bedrooms.

Tune in to 13 News at 5 for more on the fire from Rebecca Klopf. The Rockford Register Star's Georgette Braun will also give more insight into the family and those who lost their lives.


A 10-month-old, a 13-year-old boy, a 21-year-old man with special needs, and a woman in her sixties were killed in the early morning fire.

Family members say a live Christmas tree was smoking and caught fire, engulfing the entire home in flames and smoke before firefighters could arrive.

The family is asking for help in the form of clothing or gift cards for clothing. Donations can be dropped off at Trinity Lutheran Church, 200 North First Street.

The Rockford Fire Department will hold a press conference on the fire at 1:00 p.m. Monday.

Tune in to 13 News at Noon for a live report from Rebecca Klopf.


Winnebago County Coroner Sue Fiduccia confirms four people are dead in an overnight house fire at 1625 10th Avenue.

Names and ages of the victims are not being released at this time and autopsies are scheduled for tomorrow.

According to the Rockford Fire Department two people in the house were able to escape the fire.

Crews were still out early Monday morning trying to put out the blaze. What caused the fire is still under investigation. Parts of 10th Avenue were still blocked off for emergency crews.

Rockford Fire Department Division Chief Matthew Knott describes the scene when firefighters got to the blaze.

"At approximately 12:30 this morning we were dispatched for a structure fire at the 1600 block of 10th Avenue. Upon our arrival crews encountered heavy fire conditions throughout the whole structure, made numerous rescue attempts, but unfortunately we have to report there are four confirmed fatalities," said Knott.

Two people were able to get out and call 9-1-1 they're being treated at a local hospital. The structure is a total loss we'll bring you more details on this story as they become available.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WREX. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Trista Truesdale at (815) 335-7856. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at