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Row homes damaged by fire in Harrisburg, less than block away from where firefighter was struck

HARRISBURG, Pa.-- A fire damaged seven row homes in Harrisburg on Sunday. The flames broke out on the 1400 block of Walnut Street and spread through other row homes.

It's the latest of several tragedies in the city this weekend.

That fire broke out less than a block away from where Lt. Dennis DeVoe was struck by a driver police said was under the influence on Friday night. DeVoe was enroute to a fire on the 2500 block of Lexington Street. The driver who hit him was identified as 19-year-old Khanyae Kendall.

DeVoe was critically injured and rushed to Penn State Hershey Medical Center. He died from his injuries on Saturday evening.

Harrisburg Fire Chief Brian Enterline said, "It was a family member we lost. Not just anyone else, a family member."

On Friday night, crews battled the two-alarm fire that DeVoe was headed to, on Lexington Street. They say it was started by a hoverboard that exploded. Five people were injured in that fire, including 2-year old Ashanti Hughes who died from her injuries on Saturday at Lehigh Valley Hospital. Two other children remain in critical condition. One adult and another child were treated and released from the hospital.

Chief Enterline said, "We had tears in our eyes talking about it because they couldn't get to the kids quick enough."

Crews then battled the fire on the 1400-block of Walnut Street Sunday. One firefighter suffered a knee injury and was taken to the hospital, but no residents were injured. The fire chief said 10 -families are now displaced.

Neighbors looked on in disbelief as the fire spread through the group of row homes.

Rodney Schwartz, who lives a couple blocks away, said, "I've chased down a few fires. Lived here for about six years in this area and this is the biggest one that I've ever seen. It looks like it's affected quite a few houses here."

The back-to-back-to-back tragedies make neighbors nervous.

Shaka Hudson, who lives on the 1400 block of Walnut Street, said, "It's unbelievable. That (the crash) just happened a couple days ago, and then this today (Sunday). It's unbelievable. To see our neighborhood go through changes like it has, It's hard."

Enterline said although this fire is a tragedy, it gives firefighters a purpose to keep saving lives.

"We're going to come out stronger on the other end. And quite frankly, you know as we talked amongst ourselves here, that's what Lt. DeVoe would want," he said.

The fire chief said officials are not sure where or how Sunday's fire started.

A GoFundMe page has been established for the family of Lt. DeVoe. To make a donation, click here: https://www.gofundme.com/lieutenant-dennis-devoe.