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Pilsen, Little Village, Back of the Yards

Mother Who Lost 3 Kids In Little Village Fire Sues City, Alderman, Building Owner

The fire, which killed 10 children, was the deadliest in more than 40 years.

Neighbors created a memorial in the 2200 block of South Sacramento after a devastating fire killed 10 children.
Mauricio Pena/Block Club Chicago
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CHICAGO — The mother of three children killed in a Little Village apartment fire in August is suing the city, an alderman and the building’s owner.

The mother, Priscilla Cobos, lost three children in the fire: 10-year-old Giovanni Ayala, 5-year-old Gialanni Ayala and 3-year-old Alanni Ayala. Seven other kids, ranging in age from 16 years to 3 months, also died in the blaze.

Now, Cobos has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Ald. George Cardenas (12th), whose ward the apartment building is in, as well as the city and building owner Merced Gutierrez, according to online records.

Cobos’ attorney and Gutierrez’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment.

But the lawsuit claims the city and Cardenas ignored code violations at the building, which Gutierrez’s attorney denied, according to the Tribune.

The children killed in the Aug. 26 fire had all been relatives or friends who were sleeping over at the building in the 2200 block of South Sacramento Avenue. The fire started about 4 a.m., spreading from the rear of the building to the front.

The fire was the deadliest Chicago blaze in more than 40 years.

Officials said in February the fire had been classified as “incendiary,” meaning it was caused by a flame.

Gutierrez must demolish the building before July 18.