The family of a mother whose partner and five children died in a house fire is ‘completely broken’.
Samantha Stephenson, 28, and Wanye Godinet’s rental home on Russell Island, south-east of Brisbane, caught fire at around 6:20am on Sunday.
Neighbors said the mother, who escaped the flames with her 21-year-old sister, ran out shouting ‘my children, my children’ because she knew the children were still upstairs.
Ms Stephenson tried to run back inside, but Mr Godinet, 34, stopped her and ran back into the burning building himself.
He was trapped with his four-year-old twins Kyza and Koa, his three-year-old son Nicky and his stepsons, Zack, 11, and Harry, 10, until the second floor collapsed.
Detectives on Monday still could not confirm whether the fire was suspicious, but said the family was “known to police” and planned to review previous calls to the home.
Ms Stephenson’s family have been silent since the tragedy, until Monday night when relative Angela Stephenson wrote a social media post, saying Mr Godinet was her “hero”.
Samantha Stephenson (pictured with one of her five children) could only watch as her house caught fire with her partner and children inside.
The fire was so intense that firefighters were only able to collect the remains of the house in the late afternoon after fighting it since 6:18 a.m.
Ms Stephenson’s family have been silent since the tragedy, until Monday night when relative Angela Stephenson wrote a social media post.
“First of all, the Godinets and Stephenson want to say thank you for the condolences, love and prayers at this time,” he wrote.
‘We are completely broken.
“They are all greatly loved and will always be loved, forever my boys and my hero, Wayne.”
He also included a link to a go finance me campaign, set up by Mrs. Stephenson’s friend, Lilly Slater, to help with living expenses and to help finance six funerals.
On Monday, Ms. Slater said Daily Mail Australia: ‘Samantha just wants the world to know: Check your smoke detectors and hold your babies.
Later Monday, Godinet’s mother, Angelita, uploaded a photo of a poem to pay tribute to her son and grandchildren.
“As I sit in heaven and watch you every day, I try to let you know with signs that I never left,” he said.
Mr. Godinet worked for an asbestos removal company and was remembered by his colleagues as a “driving force on the A-Team” who “built a reputation based on hard work and integrity.”
Father Wayne Godinet, 34, and his five children (pictured) perished after being trapped in a deadly fire on Queensland’s Russell Island.
Emergency services were called to the burning house around 6 a.m. (pictured scene)
“We are totally devastated to have lost Wayne over the weekend, along with his five children,” the Facebook post read.
“Everyone loved being around him and his huge smile would light up the room.”
‘We will miss you my friend, the A-Team will never be the same without you.’
Detective Superintendent Andrew Massingham told a news conference on Monday that police planned to speak to Ms Stephenson and her sister.
“The establishment of that investigation center is because there are some elements of this incident yesterday that require closer scrutiny,” Superintendent Massingham said.
‘It has not been determined at this stage whether or not this fire is suspicious.
‘It is important that I tell you that we keep an open mind regarding this matter.’
He also confirmed that police had been called to the property in the past, but said that “the nature and frequency of our assistance is subject to internal review and will be part of the investigation.”
Superintendent Massingham would not say whether Mr. Godinet was supposed to be in the house or not.
Detectives invaded the area on Sunday and Monday. There is an investigation into the cause of the fire.
Neighbors said the mother-of-five had been sleeping upstairs with the children, while Godinet slept downstairs.
Ms. Stephenson was released from the hospital on Monday morning and is cooperating with investigators as they try to determine the cause of the fire.
Peter MacLoughlin, a close friend of the family, told the media that he found out about the fire from Mrs Stephenson’s mother’s partner and immediately got in the car.
Sam ran out of the house. She was just yelling ‘my children, my children,’ I can never forget that,’ he said Monday.
The fire started around 6 a.m. Sunday and spread to two other homes, sending thick plumes of smoke billowing into the sky.
One house collapsed while firefighters worked to put out flames in another.
About 20 firefighters managed to extinguish the flames in a third home.
Nine people were treated by paramedics.