Enfield community members are remembering a 13-year-old girl, who died in a fire at her home in October, by holding fundraisers to start a scholarship in her name.
Months later, it's still hard for Mike Hart to talk about losing his daughter, Hope Hart-Hartnett.
"She was a happy kid. She loved everybody, never said anything bad about anyone," Mike Hart said. "I want everyone to remember how she was real friendly and got along with everybody. Everyone around the lake loved her."
On Oct. 24, Hope was home with her mother and her mother's boyfriend when the fire began just before midnight. Mike Hart, who was living at his father's house across the lake, spotted the flames, and ran over to help.
"I asked where my daughter was and then said she was upstairs and I tried getting up there," he said. "But, I couldn't."
Despite his and the firefighters' best efforts, Hope didn't make it out. Her family has spent the past three months dealing with her death.
"It hits you at the most awkward times that she's gone," said Hope's uncle, Daniel Hart. "It's something that'll stick with us for the rest of our lives. That's kind of the way I want it. I don't ever want to forget her."
Community members of Shaker Pines Lake are putting together a series of fundraisers with the first coming up this Saturday.
The Scholarship Fund Dinner will be held at Enfield Elks Lodge on Feb. 9 from 5 p.m. to midnight.
Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for people from ages 9 to 16 and $1 for 8-years-old and under. Tickets can be purchased at the following site.
The eighth grader loved music and loved to sing. Neighbors want to start a scholarship fund in her name that will go to a middle school aged students interested in studying music.
"She was part of this community in a big way, she really was a sweet little girl," said neighbor Nelson Rodriguez. "How could you not do something in her name so she won't be forgotten?"
Mike Hart said the outpouring of support does provide some comfort and right now, he needs it.
"Everybody loses someone in their life at some point," he said. "But, losing a child, I've found that is the worst."
Shaker Pines Fire Chief Charlie Macsata told Eyewitness News the cause of the fire was ruled accidental. The state fire marshal is still working on a final report.
At this point, the fire department doesn't know if there were smoke detectors inside the home.
Macsata said he wanted to remind everyone in Enfield that the department received a grant. Any Enfield resident can stop by the fire house and pick up a smoke detector for free.
Copyright 2013 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Tuesday, May 21 2013 8:26 PM EDT2013-05-22 00:26:23 GMT
A Severe Thunderstorm Watch has been issued for the all of northern Connecticut until 9 p.m.National Weather Service officials said people should be on the lookout for threatening weather and to pay attentionMore >
Tornado and severe thunderstorm warnings were issued in Litchfield county Tuesday evening as severe weather moved into the state.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 6:03 PM EDT2013-05-21 22:03:06 GMT
A family spokesperson told Eyewitness News that the body of a missing Eastern Connecticut State University student was found dismembered. Alyssiah Wiley was last seen since April 20 when she said she wasMore >
A family spokesperson told Eyewitness News that the body of a missing Eastern Connecticut State University student was found dismembered.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:10 PM EDT2013-05-22 01:10:01 GMT
The fiance of a 40-year-old man, who was shot and killed after trying to sell electronics off Craigslist in Hartford, speaks to Eyewitness News for the first time Tuesday. Felix DeJesus, of Cromwell, wasMore >
The girlfriend of a 40-year-old man, who was shot and killed after trying to sell electronics off Craigslist in Hartford, speaks to Eyewitness News for the first time Tuesday.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 8:58 PM EDT2013-05-22 00:58:27 GMT
A New York man was arrested for making threatening phone calls to the families of the victims of the Newtown school shooting and Connecticut lawmakers. On Dec. 14, 20 first graders and six adults wereMore >
A New York man was arrested for making threatening phone calls to the families of the victims of the Newtown school shooting and Connecticut lawmakers.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 8:40 PM EDT2013-05-22 00:40:27 GMT
A house fire in Ellington may have occured after it was struck by lightning Tuesday night. Few details were being released, but officials said the fire occured at 8 Zimmerman Way just before 8 p.m. ThereMore >
A house in Ellington may have been struck by lightning Tuesday night.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 3:08 PM EDT2013-05-21 19:08:59 GMT
Two Bristol men were arrested for allegedly stealing $25,000 worth of scrap metal from a business in Southington.Gary M. Desrochers and Nicholas B. Marin are accused of stealing 39,000 pounds of "tool-gradeMore >
Two Bristol men were arrested for allegedly stealing $25,000 worth of scrap metal from a business in Southington.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 7:16 PM EDT2013-05-21 23:16:48 GMT
MOORE, OK - The Oklahoma County Sheriff's office tweeted a photo of a frightened, muddy dog Monday after the deadly EF-5 tornado ripped through the town.The comment accompanying the photo said, "scared,More >
A heartbreaking photo of a little dog guarding the body of his owner, who was killed in the Moore, OK, tornado, is going viral.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 7:23 PM EDT2013-05-21 23:23:01 GMT
The suspect and two children who were subjects of a Massachusetts Amber Alert Monday night were located in South Windsor by Connecticut State Police.More >
A Massachusetts father of two, who is accused of kidnapping his children from a foster home and sparking an Amber Alert Monday night, told a packed courtroom that he's the one who is the victim of a crime.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 7:31 PM EDT2013-05-21 23:31:00 GMT
After thousands of online votes, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced the winner of Connecticut's fan favorite town contest Tuesday morning And the winner is Niantic."It just brings everyone together," saidMore >
After thousands of online votes, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced the winner of Connecticut's fan favorite town contest Tuesday morningMore >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 8:45 PM EDT2013-05-22 00:45:05 GMT
A reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the person that critically injured a 2-year-old during a hit-and-run crash in Bridgeport.Police said Erica Parmlee parked her vehicleMore >
A reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the person that critically injured a 2-year-old during a hit-and-run crash in Bridgeport.More >