Gatesville: Memorial service held for young victim of house fire

Cheyenne Harrington died at McLane Children's Hospital in Temple. (Family photos)
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GATESVILLE, Texas (KWTX) A memorial service was held Friday for a 10-year-old Gatesville girl who died in a house fire three days before Christmas.

Cheyenne Harrington was pulled from her family’s burning house late on the night of Dec. 22 and later died at McLane Children’s Hospital in Temple.

Mourners streamed into the Gatesville High School gymnasium Friday afternoon for the service.

The fire was reported just before midnight on Dec. 22 in the 100 block of Oak Lane off Golf Course Road in Gatesville, police Chief Nathan Gholke said.

Other family members escaped without injury, Gholke said.

Harrington was trapped in her room by the fire and her mother and father were unable to find her because of the heavy smoke, family members said.

"She meant the world to us," Cheyenne's grandmother, Sheila Whipkey, said.

"A house can be replaced a life can't be,"

"We are not prepared, we don't have enough for funeral. They lost everything in the house," she said.

A preliminary State Fire Marshal’s Office investigation found that faulty wiring was the likely cause of the fire.

“In lieu of flowers, an account has been opened to help re-establish the family’s home. Donations to the account can be made at any National United Bank location,” the Gatesville ISD said.

“Cheyenne Harrington was a kind and sweet fifth grade student at Gatesville Intermediate. We were deeply saddened to hear of her passing. As you can imagine her family is devastated, so please be in prayer for them,” the district said after the girl’s death.