Services held for 4 killed in alleged arson fire - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Services held for 4 killed in alleged arson fire

Noah, in the blue T-shirt, survived the fire. (Source: Matt and Natasha Owen) Noah, in the blue T-shirt, survived the fire. (Source: Matt and Natasha Owen)
Ethan Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home) Ethan Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home)
Kailey Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home) Kailey Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home)
Landan Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home) Landan Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home)
Brandan Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home) Brandan Owen (Source: Wilson's Funeral Home)

PERCY, IL (KFVS/AP) - Services for four siblings killed in a southern Illinois house fire were held Tuesday afternoon in Steeleville.

Authorities have blamed a man now facing murder charges.

Investigators say 12-year-old Ethan Owen, 9-year-old Kailey Owen and 5-year-old twins Brandan Owen and Landan Owen died in the blaze early Friday in the Randolph County village of Percy. That's southeast of St. Louis, Missouri.

Prosecutors have charged 33-year-old Derrick Twardoski with four counts of first-degree murder. He's jailed without bond, pending a court appearance scheduled for Monday.

State's Attorney Jeremy Walker says he doesn't consider the fire random, but he isn't elaborating.

Services for the children were held at 2 p.m. Tuesday at St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Steeleville, followed by burial in the church cemetery.

More than a 150 family members and friends of the Owen family gathered at the church to say their final goodbyes.

As the Hearst lined the front of the church, four crosses stood side by side inside.

The congregation sang songs of praise for the children.

As Pastor Dr. Alan Jenneke spoke of the children's death, and the loss to the Owen family and the community.

"We're not going to find closure," said Pastor Jenneke. "Because this loss is just going to be with us for the rest of our lives. But with the support of the community, and support of the family and friends that continue to surround us we'll find the strength to go on."

Pastor Jenneke said this was his first time in his 30 year of ministries that he's ever had to officiate over a funeral for four children from the same family.

Copyright 2013 KFVS. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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