MORENCI -- A tragic start to the Memorial Day weekend for an area neighborhood. Seven survive, but a young couple dies in a house fire in Morenci, Michigan. Fire engines from 5 surrounding towns responded to the fire early Saturday morning on the 300 block of South East Street in Morenci.
Tanieya Lewis reported from Morenci and says the teens were well known to the community.
Friends say 18-year-old Jonathan Pike was a star athlete and graduate of Morenci High School. His 15-year-old girlfriend Chelsey Sedlacek had an interest in animal rights. Pike was home from college visiting his dad step mom and siblings when the tragedy took place.
They return in the light of day to see the house that went up in flames, claiming the lives of a teen couple, Jonathan Pike and Chelsey Sedlacek.
Friend of the couple Jacob Adams says, "We saw them yesterday. You see someone one day, and the next day, they're being carried out on a stretcher. I'm still waiting to wake up from this."
But the boarded windows, charred debris on the ground, and yellow caution tape around the house are a harsh reminder that the nightmare is real. Early Saturday morning, neighbors awoke to screams coming from the home.
James Turpening says fire was shooting out of the windows and the couple living here were outside frantic.
"Their father was trying to kick the front door in, and I kind of helped him kick the front door in. But it came open and the flames were too hot to go in there."
By the time firefighters arrived much of the house was engulfed in flames. Everybody had gotten out, except for Pike and his girlfriend. Friends say they'd been together for two years and Pike refused leave her when she needed him the most.
Friend of the couple Jacob Adams says, "Johnny, from what we know, did everything he could to get his girlfriend out."
Neither made it out alive.