Family: Boy liked playing with fire, cause ruled accidental

by: Alyana Gomez Updated:

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Balloons and teddy bears adorn the grave sites of the Fowler family's children.

Bubba was 4 years old, Rachel was 2 and Janet wasn't even a year old.

"Janet's birthday was yesterday. She would have turned 1," said the mother Jennifer Fowler.

Wednesday should have been a day of celebrating life, but instead, Jennifer Fowler spent the day laying out gifts for her children, still mourning their deaths.

"I had to sing 'Happy Birthday' to her and instead of saying 'many more,' I had to say, 'Mommy loves you,'" said Fowler.

Fowler said she blames herself for what happened. She also knows her mother, Sheila Swearingen shouldn't have been with her children.


Special Section: Fowler Family Fire


"She wasn't mentally capable of watching all four children at one time," she said.

The State Fire Marshal's investigation found that children playing with fire is what sparked the blaze.

That didn't come as a surprise to the kids' grandfather, who says Bubba was intrigued by fire.

"I caught him with a cigarette lighter one time and said, 'No, you don't ever play with fire," said Clayton Woods.

Now we're learning that little Haddie, the lone survivor, saw exactly how the tragedy happened.

"She said that Bubba was playing with fire and paper," said Woods.

It comes as a heartbreaking truth for this family. Now all they have left are past pictures and cherished memories.


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