An early-morning house fire in Wichita Falls claimed the lives of an elderly man and a young boy.

The victims have been identified as 85-year-old Tony Perez and his 10-year-old grandson Brian Perez. The fire started at around 2:30 am Monday morning (11/27) at the home at 4617 Tradewinds Road.

Officials say the fire appears to have been started by a portable space heater in the living room of the home.

The home was fully engulfed when fire fighters arrived on scene. No other injuries or fatalities were reported.

Brian Perez was a student at Fowler Elementary School. Fowler Principal Alexandra Martin issued the following statement:

The staff and students at Fowler Elementary were saddened to learn of the death of one of our precious students overnight. Brian Perez was a 4th grade student at Fowler. We extend our condolences to the family, and our thoughts and prayers are with them during this incredibly difficult time.

We encourage you to be especially sensitive and prepared to offer support to your child. Because this is a delicate situation for children to comprehend, we want you to be informed so that you can talk to your child in a manner that you feel is appropriate.  Due to the nature of the situation, 4th and 5th grade students are being informed this afternoon so the message is delivered in a developmentally appropriate way in a monitored environment.

Trained counselors are available to speak to your child individually if additional help is needed. We also offer resources that may be helpful when discussing the loss of a child.

Thank you for your concern and support during this difficult time.  Please pray for the Perez Family, our students and staff.