Chicago firefighter's 2 remaining children die days after house fire also claims lives of wife, son

His wife Summer Day-Stewart and 7-year-old son Ezra Stewart also died from their injuries

ByDiane Pathieu and Stephanie Wade WLS logo
Saturday, March 11, 2023
Chicago firefighter's 2 remaining children die days after house fire also claims lives of wife, son
Chicago firefighter Walter Stewart's 2 remaining children have died, days after his wife and 7-year-old son also die after a house fire in Montclare.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A Northwest Side fire has claimed the lives of all four family members of a Chicago firefighter.

The two remaining children, a 2-year-old boy and 9-year-old girl -- who have been hospitalized since the Montclare house fire on Tuesday night -- passed away Friday night, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office.

The blaze also claimed the lives of CFD firefighter Walter Stewart's wife, 36-year-old Summer Day-Stewart, who died on Friday, as well as the couple's 7-year-old son, Ezra Stewart, who died on Wednesday, according to the medical examiner.

The identities of the two other children have not yet been released.

The fire broke out just after 9 p.m. in the 2500-block of North Rutherford Avenue, officials said. Everyone inside the home suffered severe smoke inhalation.

A deceased pet was also seen being removed from the home Wednesday morning.

CFD Spokesman Larry Langford said the firefighter at Truck 55 in Edison Park rushed to the scene after hearing his own address come over the scanner. His fellow firefighters huddled around to show their support.

Ignite the Spirit, a Chicago Fire Department charity, has established a fund to support the family.

Chicago fire officials passed out smoke alarms and fire prevention materials near where the fire occurred, as they always do after a deadly blaze. It's a reminder to check devices and change batteries in the detectors, especially as we approach the time change weekend.

The home involved in the fire did have detectors, CFD said.

Fire inspectors are working on determining the cause of the fire. Investigators wouldn't say whether or not the fire was intentional as the cause remains under investigation.