Community mourns loss of family killed in house fire

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Tabitha, Jason and Sean died in a house fire in Glendale on Wednesday. (Source: youcaring.com) Tabitha, Jason and Sean died in a house fire in Glendale on Wednesday. (Source: youcaring.com)
Glendale Police said on Thursday the house fire was not suspicious. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Glendale Police said on Thursday the house fire was not suspicious. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The kids' mother also died. (Source: youcaring.com) The kids' mother also died. (Source: youcaring.com)
All three Gilsinger kids attended Edupreneurship Student Center until last year. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) All three Gilsinger kids attended Edupreneurship Student Center until last year. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
GLENDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Neighbors, teachers, students and friends are coming together to mourn the loss of a Glendale family killed in a devastating house fire this week.

Family members confirm Heather Johnson and her children Tabitha, 14, and twin boys Sean and Jason Gilsinger, 13, died after flames broke out in their home on Mercer Lane.

"We are devastated by the loss of our family members,” the family said in a statement. “We appreciate the love and support we have felt from friends and the community. We ask you to keep our family in your prayers."

Glendale Police said on Thursday the house fire early Wednesday was not suspicious. Investigators are still trying to determine the cause of the fire.

[ORIGINAL STORY: 3 children, woman killed in early morning house fire in Glendale]

“Just this horrible feeling inside,” says Debbie Salas, head of the Edupreneurship Student Center. “It just hit me really hard.”

All three Gilsinger kids attended the school up until last year. The campus has about 75 students enrolled. It’s so small that many students and teachers describe the school as a family.

Salas has tried to explain the tragedy to the many students who know the Gilsinger children.

“'Because I don’t know a whole lot of what’s going on I don’t have many answers for you,' I said,” explains Salas. “But we will get through this together.”

[RELATED: Fundraising effort underway following deadly Glendale house fire]

Administrators are encouraging students to go to class tomorrow in special colors representing the Gilsingers’ favorites.

Salas says parents have been notified, crisis response teams are working with students and staff will be pulling together resources for surviving family members.

Neighbors are holding a candlelight vigil Saturday at 7 p.m. outside the home on the 5200 block of West Mercer Lane.

[YOUCARING: Funeral Expenses for Johnson/Gilsinger family of 4]

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