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4 children dead, 3 other people injured in Oregon house fire, deputy says

4 children dead, 3 other people injured in Oregon house fire, deputy says
A fire broke out overnight at this home in rural Riddle, Ore., about 200 miles south of Portland. (Chelsea Duncan / Associated Press)

Four children died and three other people were seriously injured after a house fire broke out overnight in a small timber town in rural Oregon, authorities said Wednesday.

Douglas County Sheriff's Deputy Dwes Hutson said the children ranged in age from 4 to 13.

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Two adults and a 13-year-old boy survived and suffered serious injuries in the fire that broke out at 2 a.m. in Riddle, a town about 200 miles south of Portland.

"The injured are very seriously injured," Hutson said.

James Keith Howell, 39, Tabitha Annette Howell, 38, and 13-year-old Andrew Hall-Young were transported to a Portland hospital.

Killed were Gwendolyn Howell, 4, Haley Maher, 7, Isaiah Young, 10, and Nicholas Lowe, 13.

Hutson said Nicholas was a foster child.

Tabitha Howell is the mother of all the children.

South Umpqua School District Supt. Tim Porter said students in his district were among the victims. The district is providing grief counseling, he said.

Authorities remained on the scene to begin an investigation. The cause of the fire does not appear to be suspicious, Hutson said.

Douglas County is one of the areas hardest hit by the collapse of the timber industry.

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UPDATES:

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3:30 p.m.: This article was updated with news that all four killed were children.

This article was originally published at 3 p.m.

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