Wyatt Tofte, 13, died Tuesday in a fire in Marion, Oregon, along with his grandmother, Peggy Mosso, 71, he told CNN a family spokesman.
Mosso was found dead in a burning car, while her daughter and Wyatt Tofte’s mother, Angela, were nearby trying to save her. Angela survived, but is in critical condition. Her husband and Tofte’s father, Chris, also survived.
“Our family is devastated by the loss of 13-year-old Wyatt and her grandmother Peggy in Santiam Fire on the morning of September 8. After a long search, Wyatt was found in a car with the dog in his arms. “Angie is in critical condition, with burns all over her body. We want to thank the emergency personnel and the people who helped with the search. I received it from everyone during this terrible tragedy, “the family said in a statement.
The Salem Statesman Journal writes that Chris Tofte began searching for his wife, son and mother-in-law as fire broke out around him. On Tuesday, he found his wife, with severe burns, walking along the road to their home when he returned with a borrowed trailer to retrieve his belongings.
He did not recognize her at first and told her that he was looking for his wife and son.
“I’m your wife,” Angela told the Statesman Journal.
Wyatt Tofte was found in another car, and the family allegedly ran away and got into the car believing that he would be protected from the surrounding flames.
“Wyatt was the sweetest boy; he loved to fish, he played video games, like many children, but he was a sweet and polite boy,” said Susan Vaslev, a family spokeswoman.
At least four people have died in fires in Oregon, while 20 people have died in California since mid-August.