Hundreds say goodbye to Hoosier family killed in house fire

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Friday, hundreds paid tribute to a family of six that died when their home caught fire last month.

Leo and Brandy Guerra, and their four children Miranda – Esteban, Blanquita, and Fuentes- didn’t survive after their home went up in flames on Olney Street.

But despite the pain, family members say their faith and support from the community are helping them pull through.

Six caskets lined together – four with a teddy bear on top, reminding people of the young lives cut short. The sad sight of seeing the Guerra family left loved ones in disbelief that they’re gone.

“I was like this is just a bad dream,” said Sandra Lopez, Leo’s sister. “It’s just a dream that you know, am I going to wake up and this is all a dream and it just didn’t happen?”

Waking up from the nightmare hasn’t been easy for Lopez, not after losing her brother, sister in law, two nieces, and two nephews. But if there was any silver lining to them being gone it’s that they’re at least together.

“It was really tough seeing all of them lined up. But they’re together and they were a team,” said Luis Guerra, Leo’s son who didn’t live with the family of six.

“They were, they were always together. They were a special kind of family,” said Lopez.

More than 200 people shared in the emotional roller coaster at today’s service at New Wineskin Ministries.

Many were in tears one second then smiling the next as family members told stories about the good times. They were also reminded of how the Guerra family will live on through dozens of others thanks to being organ donors.

“So many good things came out of this unfortunate tragedy,” said Lopez.

A tragedy that claimed the lives of six people who were always together and always will be.

“They were a team, they were a unit. And they’re still together, and so I’m really happy for that,” said Guerra.

In the wake of this tragedy comes more positivity. The Indianapolis Fire Department is opening up its “Survive Alive House” Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Families there can learn how to create escape plans if a fire starts in their home, they’ll also learn how to prevent fires from happening.

Survive Alive is located at 748 Massachusetts Avenue downtown. The house can also be reached by phone at 317-327-6707.

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