Father mourns the loss of son killed in Belmont fire

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BELMONT -

Sunday marked the one-month anniversary of the Belmont fire that left 13 people dead, including a former Army National Guard soldier.

Pvt. Emmanuel Mensah died trying to save other people who were inside of the Prospect Avenue apartment building when it went up in flames on Dec. 28.

Kwabena Mensah, the victim's father, tells News 12 that his 26-year-old son ran back into the building several times to try to save other tenants from the city's deadliest fire in more than 25 years.

The heartbroken father took time off from his job as a taxi driver to mourn his son and his bills are getting harder to pay.
In addition to Emmanuel's death, Kwabena Mensah's 86-year-old mother died a week later. He keeps something special to remember them both by.

"When Emmanuel died I used a tissue to wipe my tears," Kwabena said. "I kept that tissue and when I go home to mourn my mother and I cry I am going to wipe my tears with the same tissue and throw it in her tomb. That's the only thing I can give them...my tears."

Emmanuel Mensah had been training to be a military police officer. He was stationed in Virginia and was home for the holidays when the fire occurred.

He will be buried at Woodlawn Cemetery on Feb. 17.

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