Woman, 70, ID'd as victim killed in Dixmoor house fire, remembered as 'a beautiful person'

Dixmoor Village President Fitzgerald Roberts said he learned a lot from Karen Seay
DIXMOOR, Ill. (WLS) -- Family members are remembering the woman killed in a house fire in south suburban Dixmoor Saturday as an important part of the community.

Firefighters responded to a home on Marshfield Avenue near 142nd Street about 5 p.m.

It appeared the roof collapsed, trapping Karen Seay inside.

Little else remains of the house on the corner, as her family fondly referred to it, besides the burnt walls.

Seay had just celebrated her 70th birthday last month before her tragic death.

"My aunt Karen, she was just such a beautiful person," Seay's niece Tonya Henry said.

It was extremely difficult for Henry to return to her aunt's home Sunday.

"Everybody in Dixmoor knows my auntie. They all know her and love her, and they're definitely going to miss the house on the corner," she said.

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Seay was a mother of seven children and was always smiling -- the life of the party, her son said.

"I feel so bad for my cousins, her children, her grandchildren; she's got great grandchildren. And this is a hard way to go," Henry said.

Seay also made an impact in her community, Dixmoor Village President Fitzgerald Roberts said.

"She will be missed, but, also at the same time, she will always be remembered, and I did learn a lot from her," Roberts said. "When I would talk to her, we'd always laugh. She was a very smart person, very intelligent person. She was friendly. Some of the people out here knew her, and some didn't know her. But, for those who didn't know her, you missed out on a lot of wisdom and knowledge. Because when I would ride by, she would always tell me something."

In light of the tragedy, village officials are encouraging folks to have an exit plan in the event of a fire, and want to ensure people have what they need, especially in the winter months.

"Smoke detectors, anything that we could possibly help you with, we would just appreciate if you would contact the village and we will take care of it for you," Dixmoor trustee Tea Troy Webster said.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but foul play is not suspected.

"Tell people you love them. That's it," Henry said.
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