Investigators are still sifting through the rubble for clues to what caused a house fire in Myersville, Md. that killed two young sisters.
The fire Thursday night was so intense that the parents of 3-year-old Sophie and 6-year-old Madigan Lillard were unable to get to them. The girls died from smoke inhalation, a medical examiner later ruled.
Their sisters, 8-year-old Morgan and 7-month-old Sadie, and their parents, Jack and Angela Christine Lillard, were taken to area hospitals, and Morgan remained hospitalized Tuesday night as the community came together for a fundraiser for the family.
Crowds were packed inside a Chick-fil-A on Urbana Pike in Frederick, with a line trailing out the door. The restaurant was donating 25 percent of all proceeds from 4 to 8 p.m.
The Lillards' story has touched so many that very few of the thousands who showed up even knew the family. "It's obvious that this has effected a lot of people," one attendee told News4's Erika Gonzalez.
"Every one of our moms would step up to support the other moms in the community," said another, "because you never know when it's gonna be you that needs [to be] lifted up."
Community members also donated clothes and cash to add to the night's proceeds.
Other efforts to help the family are below:
- Donations of jackets, clothing, personal care items, homegoods, toys and gift cards can be made at Jumbo's Pumpkin Patch, Candlelight Floral Designs, Monocacy Valley Montessori and Carroll Creek Montessori schools. (Sizing: XL-XXL 18/20 clothes, size 10 shoes for the mother; M, L, XL sizes, 34/36 x 32/34 size pants, size 9.5 shoes for the father; size 7-8 clothes, big kids size 2 shoes, prefers unisex clothing for the 8-year-old girl; and size 3-9 months clothing for the baby girl.)
- Frederick County Bank set up the Lillard Family Recovery Fund. Cash or check donations can be made at any branch.
- Fit for Life Boot Camp is raising founds online at giveforward.com.
- The Creative Children's Center at 603 Main St. in Myersville is accepting donations from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday.