Officials determine cause of death of 3 family members killed in Buckingham County fire

3 family members found dead after Buckingham County house fire

BUCKINGHAM COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) - Three family members, including a 10-year-old boy, were found dead in September 2019, after a fire in their home in Dillwyn.

A 911 call came in at 5 a.m. on Sept. 16 for the fire in the 20,300 block of James Anderson Highway, or Route 60.

“Once fire crews were able to extinguish the fire and make entry into the residence, the remains of three individuals were located inside,” Virginia State Police said in a news release.

Earl Booker, 57, Colette Booker, 46, and their 10-year-old son Nayquarius were found dead in the parent’s bedroom, according to Jessica Tucker, the adult daughter of Earl, and sister of Nayquarius. Colette was Tucker’s stepmother.

Officials determined that the manner of death was accidental and the cause of death was smoke inhalation and thermal burns for all three.

Nayquarius, affectionately called “Poo” by his family, was a fifth-grader at Buckingham County Elementary School.

Dozens of relatives who gathered across the street from the charred home were left speechless.

“I have no words right now. It’s unbelievable that this has happened,” said Derek Tucker, Jessica’s husband.

Longtime neighbor Sandra Witt says she and her husband rushed to the window in the early hours of the morning after hearing a loud sound.

“We heard a loud noise... and saw the house on fire. All of it was in flames. It was just horrible," said Witt.

Colette Booker was found dead with her husband and son following a house fire.
Colette Booker was found dead with her husband and son following a house fire. (Source: Family)

This is the second tragedy in a short time for the family. Tucker says her brother, 15-year-old Deondre Booker, was killed in a car crash last month.

Earl Booker, with 10-year-old son Nayquaris, pictured at the funeral of his son, 16-year-old Deondre Booker, who was killed in a car crash last month.
Earl Booker, with 10-year-old son Nayquaris, pictured at the funeral of his son, 16-year-old Deondre Booker, who was killed in a car crash last month. (Source: Family)

Officials say the home is completely destroyed.

The Booker family has lived in Buckingham County for decades. Earl, known as ‘Junnie Boy,’ recently took on a new job as a woodcutter. Many neighbors knew Colette since she worked at a local convenience store.

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