Long Island mother and children killed in house fire

A forty-one-year old woman and her three children were killed in a large Long Island house fire on Friday night, while authorities continue to investigate the source of the blaze. 

Jennifer McCusker appears to have been overcome with smoke while trying to rescue her 2-year-old twins Ava Jane Mistretta and Brendan Mistretta from their crib. Her seven-year-old son, Aidan Tarbell, was also killed in the fire, according to the New York Times

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The house was located in the town of Shirley about 60 miles east of New York City, reported NBC New York, which added that the fire may have begun in the living room. 

“The flames were just coming out the front window, coming out the side of the house, the front door,” said neighbor George Flamme to the New York Times. “It went up in no time.” He added: “You heard pop, pop, pop when the windows started blowing out.”

Two of McCusker's neighbors — an EMT and a volunteer firefighter — attempted to enter the house, but were pushed back by the smoke and flames, wrote the Associated Press. 

"We're devastated. The whole block is devastated. They are 2 and 7 years old. They didn't even get a chance at life yet," said neighbor Sharon Browning to the Associated Press.