BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — A father, 53, his two daughters, 23 and 27, and a dog are dead after a massive house fire in Buffalo. As of Monday afternoon, the mother, 53, remains at ECMC, where she’s being treated for smoke inhalation.
A neighbor reported seeing flames on the second floor of the Huntington Avenue house around 3:30 a.m. This is just blocks away from Shoshone Park.
According to officials, the fire started on the second floor of the home and spread to the attic. Those who died were declared deceased at the scene after firefighters tried to save them. They were identified as Jonathan, Jensen, and Jordan Daniels.
Dr. Jonathan Daniels served as associate director of admissions at the University at Buffalo’s Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
“He was a tireless advocate for diversifying the physician workforce and has worked closely with the Associated Medical Schools of New York to expand the pool of scholars choosing careers in medicine and health care, by providing academic enrichment and support to students from educationally and/or economically underserved backgrounds,” Dr. Allison Brashear, UB vice president for health sciences and dean of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, said.
Jordan had just graduated from the UB School of Management in May, receiving her MBA. UB says Dr. Daniels’ wife, Janessa Givens Daniels, works for the school as senior associate director of financial aid. Their surviving daughter, Jillian, is a 2020 graduate.
“As a university community, our collective hearts are broken with the devastating tragedy that claimed the life of beloved faculty member, Dr. Daniels and his two cherished daughters, one of whom is an alumna,” UB President Satish K. Tripathi said. “Our deepest sympathies and thoughts are with Janessa as we pray for her full recovery.”
“Dr. Daniels was a tremendously talented and empathetic physician, and a steadfast advocate for improving population health,” said Erie County Commissioner of Health Dr. Gale Burstein. “His death leaves a profound void in the local pediatric and medical community, and I will sincerely miss his insight and feedback. On behalf of our entire department and members of the board of health, our thoughts are with his wife, Janessa, in her recovery and to his entire family in this time of overwhelming grief.”
UB is providing counseling services to students, staff and faculty.
During the morning, multiple streets were closed as crews worked to extinguish the flames. Five firefighters had to be taken to ECMC after suffering various injuries. They’ve since been treated and released.
The American Red Cross and The Salvation Army responded to the scene, as well. Overall, the damage to the home is estimated at $230,000. Exposure damage to a nearby home totaled in at $55,000.
“It’s very difficult anytime anyone perishes in a fire,” Renaldo said. “It’s very difficult. It was physically demanding as well because the victims had to be removed from the attic and second floor. That part wasn’t easy. The crews did an amazing job.”
We’re working to learn more about how the fire started. It does not appear, at this time, that fireworks were a factor in this Independence Day blaze.
- Hamburg businesses pick up the pieces more than a week after historic snowstorm
- ‘Squid Game’ actor Oh Yeong-su charged with sexual misconduct: reports
- 6 ways to boost your credit card rewards this holiday season
- Bennett football team advances to state championship game
- Marjorie Taylor Greene hurls homophobic slur at CA rep
Chris Horvatits is an award-winning reporter who started working at WIVB in 2017. A Lancaster native, he came to Buffalo after working at stations in Rochester and Watertown. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.