Jerrybrice's Blog
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500-Pound Obese Illinois Teen Dies In Fire Because Firemen Say She Was Too Fat To Get Out Of The House…2 Firemen Injured Trying To Carry Her Out The Burning House.

Teen obesity has grown to epidemic proportions in the United States and according to a report by the US Department of Health and Human Services , 14% of adolescents in the United States are overweight.(SOURCE)

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This figure has nearly tripled in the last 20 years.(Source)

This leaves these obese teens open for several health risk such as early death, heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. Heavy teens may also have problems regulating mood, sleep, and energy levels, as well as have self-esteem and social problems related to their weight issues.

These secondary issues may even compound the weight problems by making it difficult to stick to a healthy eating and exercise program.(SOURCE)

Add to that list, as in the sad case of Jamaya Herron,18,the inability to escape a house on fire, in order to save your own life.

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Jamaya Herron of Rockford,Illinois, died Wednesday in an early morning fire that destroyed her families house at 2206 Clover Avenue in Rockford just before 4:00 a.m. Monday.Her two parents, Joe and Delores Herron, escaped, but their daughter and two foster kids,Joequavian, 11, and Javarus Blankenship ,10 were still inside a bedroom trapped by the fire, when the firefighters arrived on the scene.

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My personal rule as a parent is that my kids lives come first, and if they are inside the house, then I will die trying to get them out myself!!!

The firefighters were able to get the two young boys out of the house by passing them through a window,but they were challenged in rescuing Jamaya because, they said, she weighed over 500 pounds and proved to be too heavy for them to carry or move, and it was physically impossible for them to pass her through the window in order to save her life.

In fact, although they tried as hard as they could, two firefighters were injured in their attempt to carry her out of the house,and had to be checked out by doctors after they hurt their backs trying to save the morbidly obese teen.

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Fire Chief Derek Bergsten said this about his team of rescuers… “They gave a 110% effort,and did their best, but sometimes we’re not able to save everyone, but we were able to get two individuals out of that structure alive,”…

Since she was too fat to pass through the window, two firefighters attempted to carry her out the door, but in doing so it lengthened her exposure to the smoke, which proved to be fatal.

Emergency officials pronounced Jamaya dead at the scene, and officially reported the cause of her untimely  death to have been caused by smoke inhalation.

Illinois fire officials reported to the media that she was just “too fat to get out of the burning house”…which is a shame!

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The cause of the fire is being blamed on a candle that was left burning unattended on a table that caught fire.The family was using candles to light the house because the house, which belongs to her father Pastor Joe Herron of First Trinity Baptist Church,had been boarded up because the city condemned the house saying it was unsafe.

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No one was supposed to be living there, because the city determined it to be uninhabitable.

The house had no electricity, no water, and no gas, and the city condemns properties that have no running water, and the residence was on record as being vacant.(SOURCE)

Friends and neighbors were surprised to hear that the house had been condemned, and were unaware that the pastor was going through financially hard times.

Pastor Herron rented a church where he held congregations and also maintained this house as a place for his family to reside.

He still rents the church…but had his family living in squalor?!?!…I am not here to judge, but…come on pastor!!!

If he wants to accept it or not, his misplaced priorities, as well as him and his wife’s disregard for Jamaya’s health by allowing her to  balloon to over the reported too pounds, is at cause in her death.

…sounds like child neglect, or some type of neglect to me, and it proved to be fatal.

The 10-year-old is in serious condition in the hospital due to the trauma sustained in the fire, and the 11-year-old is in critical condition.

They were flown to a hospital in Madison with severe smoke inhalation.(SOURCE)

I pray for their health, and hope all of you will too.

The Rockford authorities have refused to charge the pastor and his wife,who made sure that they got out of the house, leaving the children to perish,with any crime, because they feel that he has suffered enough.

The firefighters are concentrating on educating the community on the importance of having working smoke detectors, and are canvassing the neighborhood with material on that, as well as volunteering to check the residences smoke detectors to see if they are working or not.

What they can not help is a fool who would call himself a man of God, yet not put his own house in order.I know a lot of preachers, some good men, and some not so good.

Any good man would not put the lives of his family in jeopardy in order to continue to rent a building to hold church!..this is a total example of a preacher with bad judgement, and he will have to answer to a higher power for this.

The family had just recently moved back into the house after having to stay in a residential hotel,where they should have never left.

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If you would like to help the family, there will be a benefit dinner on Sept. 26th from 12-3 at Covenant Community Church of God at 300 College Avenue. There’s also a benefit fund set up through Harris Bank in the name of Rev. Joe Herron…

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…but I feel that based on his lack of good judgement exhibited here is at cause in Jamaya’s death…I will try to find a way to donate the money to an outside conservator who may be responsible enough to get the money to the injured children that are fighting for their lives at this time..Joequavian, 11, and Javarus Blankenship,10.

This careless preacher who allowed his daughter to become 500 pounds, should have known better, and I refuse to give him a pass for his fatally bad judgement and misplaced family priorities.

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Let me know your thought…


Rockford-Register Star

21 Responses to “500-Pound Obese Illinois Teen Dies In Fire Because Firemen Say She Was Too Fat To Get Out Of The House…2 Firemen Injured Trying To Carry Her Out The Burning House.”

  1. Hopefully they charge the parents of that child with a child neglect charge for allowing the obesity to occur. DP may be necessary to prevent this from occurring again.

  2. How sad that someone like this had to loose her life, her father should have done more for her, people use food as something safe when they are depressed, for those that don’t have any idea what its like to be over weight then you will not understand what I am trying to say here. I gained 100 pound when I got hurt and couldn’t walk for 18 months, I was depressed and food made me happy but I am working on getting the extra off, you have to like yourself before others can help you, you alone have to make the first step. People always blame food as a factor it doesn’t help but its not the problem with young kids getting heavier, its to much computer, play games, not enough outside play. When was the last time anyone out there saw a teen playing ball, or riding a bike, or just being outside?Computers are good in ways and damage in others, they replace the ball, the bike, and parents for most don’t care. Its not so much the pop, candy, cake,chips, dounts its no play time, no one is outside riding bikes, or playing ball..The parents need to get involved with their kids..

    • It is a sign of the times, because playing outside in some neighborhoods could lead to a stray bullet inside of your body, or other unfortunate
      acts that come with the territory.
      It is truly a different world for kids now, and that’s taking it’s toll on the health of our children.
      I wish you well Terri,and i appreciate your heartfelt words here.
      It’s something that we should all think about.

      • Maybe it can be a new way to raise tax-revenues, instead of raising taxes is to assess people on taxes for every pound anyone is overweight because it ultimately will cost the tax-payers down the road.

  3. Not to be cruel, but… we don’t need no water, let that fat bitch burn…

  4. If you allow yourself to get that large there are consiquences I run and eat healthy and am still of average weight if I chose to let go I could easily be that. She was an adult its called natural selection those that let themselves live that was will die of heart diseas and other ailments

  5. I am beyond hurt. This is such a sad story. Are we really trying to help our children and our health. She shouldn’t have died. I keep thinking of how the fire men tired to get her out and then say to each other do we continue or stop. Then the girl is there and burning. Its to surreal. We don’t know what people are going through. This time in our world, people are straving right next door to us, it doesn’t have be on another continent. Children are being neglected, sexually abuse and so on. We need to get it together.

  6. May God rest this young lady’s soul,may he also give the family
    peace of mind and trust that they will see her again,and because time is not a factor in life eternal,the time between now and then will seem like a minute.

  7. It is an unfortunate situation and God calls us to be good stewards over our finances, but we all fall short. It will not do this family justice or bring them peace to have individuals that are aspiring to be journalist, reporters, or what have you to incorrectly inform or attempt to retell the story. Mr. & Mrs. Herron will live the rest of their lives knowing that neglecting the responsibilities of their home ultimately determined the fate of their daughter and that is a burden that no one would want to carry. However, it is utterly ridiculous that people will take bits a pieces of information and draw a conclusion and create a story without having the proper facts. The house was not boarded up prior to the fire. The photo that shows the property boarded up was after the fire for safety purposes. The best thing that we can do is pray that God strengthens this family and give them a peace that can’t come from nowhere or no one but God Almighty

    • Thanks for that clarification..the house was not boarded up, but it was in fact condemned..had no running water,or electricity.
      The father knew that he should not be there, and he was well aware of why the city condemned his house.
      In our community, we would never allow for this to happen to a well respected preacher,but a man that is not taking care of his family is not a man.
      I condemn all of you so-called community leaders that are rationalizing this mans child abuse, after the child is in fact deceased.

      If you are a so-called community leader, then you would have known this families situation,your city is much smaller in population than mine,and we look out for our people.
      A 500 pound child is a clear sign of some sort of mental deficiency in the parents, and none of you citizens stepped in to help he or this man out, and you all should be ashamed.

      Blasting me on a blog is “doing nothing”, which is exactly what your community has been doing in regards to this childs life for the past 18 years.

      You my friend should be ashamed of your self….

  8. Jerry-

    I hope this is not your day job or your only job. I hope that you are as active, concerned and passionate about issues in your immediate neighborhood as you seem to be with this issue. As a “community member” not “leader” there are issues that should be addressed and we should take the initiative to be more helpful to one another. It is unfortunate but it is the sign of the times. It is one of those things that if it is not happening in your back yard or affecting you directly it’s not your problem. The property was not condemned by the city before the fire but it should have been because it did not have working utilities another piece of misinformation that you posted. The city typically condemns properties without working water and because they were not aware of the fact the property was being occupied it had not been condemned. Again my comments were not to place judgment on you or the Herron family for that matter. We just need to be careful as a people on being so quick to speak sometimes you know just how intelligent someone is if they just don’t be quiet. It is typically the people that have all of the bright ideas and the most to say that take the least amount of actions when there is a problem that needs to be addressed. The fire was an absolute tragedy, and that is not excuse or dismisses anyone from any responsibilities. I believe it is a man’s responsibility to take care of his family and be the head of his household but again it is not to dismiss anyone from being responsible for the inadequate housing conditions. I found it quite interesting that your educated conclusion is that you have to have a mental deficiency if you or your child is obese. Hmmm…. interesting! Question: How would you have addressed this matter had you been aware of what was going on with this family prior to the tragedy? I don’t mean to be rude but just like everyone else that was aware probably nothing but I can stand to be corrected. Be truthful don’t post things just to get people going.

    • It was condemned…that is recorded as a public record.
      FYI.since you are not a journalist of note,nor a professional writer,then I will only take your opinion with a grain of salt.
      You are just wasting your breath here, and it’s just funny.
      Did you do anything to help these people while the too pound girl was alive?…NO!
      Did you spend any time helping her out?…NO
      You did not even lift a hand to raise a donation, or convince a contractor to fix the property via barter.
      You my friend, just want to get involved after the fact, for some sort of sick need to feel as if you are actually involved.

      This article has been read by over 7000 people since it went up on my blog, so your opinion about the quality of it is of no consequence.
      You are a poverty pimp,and seek to take no responsibility for these callous irresponsible parents actions that directly caused this obese teens death.

  9. We can only hope that years down the road, scientists develop a way that only college-educated people who are actively productive in an actual career can even conceive a child, because the past has proven that uneducated people should not ever be able to conceive children under any circumstances.

    • That would definitely reduce the population!LOl..

      • Any word on whether the parents will be charged for some crime of allowing that to occur in the first place?

      • The local cops decided not to bring any charges because they decided that they had already suffered enough!?!
        This fake preacher has the whole community on his side, and he is going to be allowed to walk away from this girls death without any repercussions, ..I mean just read the comments by his community member?
        What’s sad is..what if this is how he planned it all to turn out, and get away with disposing of his 500 pound teen?
        She must have eaten him out of house and home, and that is what you call motive.

        Seems like he committed the perfect crime.

      • Jerry-
        You are right,I am dumb, stupid and both? My mom is an idiot and I was born like this and I have to work at it!? Come on,I can’t pull myself together because I am suffering from some traumatic childhood experience that was never addressed,like allowing 500 pound neighbors to live in squalor with their murdering parents and do nothing. My Mammy,who is a whore, should have raised me better,but she sucks dick all day for crack. You are absolutely right it is public record and at least you had enough sense to know that after I lied about this incident for some reason, I checked the record. That’s great journalism ,so I will still hate on you for reporting on this child murder.blah,blah,blah..some shit about a degree through a formal education???…because i got nothing else to add to this thread,because my mouth is full of 500 pounds of cum!?

  10. The parents are the ones that actually killed the child, the fire only served to help to dispose of the body.

  11. Jerry is a profoundly self-righteous twat, but you are not helping your own cause with that last post ‘Community Member’.

    Btw, Jerry, the reason people are reading your poorly-written and reasoned post is because they like to ooh and aah and gawk at the spectacle of an obese person being too fat to be saved (nice touch about the firemen having strained backs!). Its not because your post and your blog is in any way worth reading – it is a very amateurish effort. I say that as someone who does write for a living, since you are apparently shallow enough to dismiss the opinions of those who don’t.

    It amazes me that you can take it upon yourself to judge a complete stranger for apparently not saving this preacher (who no one knew was living in poverty) on the asinine assumption of child abuse based on the girl’s obesity. If that were the case more than 50% of parents would be child abusers – which is ridiculous – so its clear that you just like to point fingers and do the holier-than-thou thing. Funny how those who profess to believe in God are often the most sour hypocrites and bigots of all.

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