Services set for young fire victims

BRIDGEPORT – Funeral arrangements for three children who died in an apartment fire in Bridgeport begin with visitation Friday at Wilson Funeral Home.

Visitation for the Looby children – Joshua Jr., 5; Ruthann, 4; and Aubrey, 2 – is scheduled from 2-8 p.m. Friday at Wilson Funeral Home, 920 National Road, Brookside, and again Saturday from 10 a.m. until the time of the service at 11 a.m., which will be held at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, Brookside.

The children died March 17 when a fire broke out at 10:45 a.m. in their apartment at 3115 Main St. in downtown Bridgeport. Their parents – Joshua Looby and Caroline Jean Owens – were taken to a Pittsburgh hospital, where they are being treated for burns.

The Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Office is still working to complete its investigation of the blaze, but representatives said last week there was no criminal activity connected to the fire. They also said they could not rule out the fire being electrical in nature.

In response to rumors circulating in the community, Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Office spokesman Michael Duchesne said there was “definitely no meth lab” at the apartment.

Duchesne said Tuesday all the investigators were out in the field and could not be reached to discuss the Bridgeport fire.

A makeshift memorial containing toy animals, balloons and three crosses bearing the children’s names at the scene continues to grow. A young couple could be seen Tuesday afternoon bringing three more toys to add to the group.