Investigators work to determine cause of Shawnee fire while surviving victims recover at hospital

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

SHAWNEE, Kan. -- Kansas fire marshals are investigating and trying to determine what caused a Shawnee home to burn Thursday morning. The fire claimed the lives of two-people, Ronnie Walkup and Christian Young. Christian was only three years old, and Walkup was his great-uncle.

There were three other victims in the fire, two women and a man. They're all at the University of Kansas Hospital being treated and may face a long road to recovery. A woman in her 90s was intubated, according to Dr. Richard Korentager. A woman in her 60s is being treated for smoke inhalation, and so is a man in his 30s.

"The youngest one, I'm very hopeful will recover very quickly," Dr. Korentager said.

Dr. Korentager said none of the three victims being treated at the hospital have burn wounds on their skin; all their injuries are related to smoke. He said treatment began right away at the scene.

"They give them oxygen, 100 percent oxygen, and then we continue that, and if necessary we can use hyperbaric oxygen," he said.

As of Thursday it's unclear how long the recovery process will be for the patients, but neighbors say they hope no more tragedy plagues this family- who's already been through so much tragedy through fires. Decades before, the same house was the scene of another deadly fire.

“I mean it just breaks my heart,” one neighbor said.

The previous tragedy was caused by an electrical fire that started in the basement, according to a family member who survived that fire.

Family members are expected to travel to Kansas City from the west coast.