Roland's father Siang Sakhawang went inside only for a few minutes by which time smoke erupted from their shed.
Roland Sakhawang, the youngest of his four siblings, was just about to turn four. But on the evening of September 24, 2022, when he was playing in the garden, a fire broke out in the family's shed on Belle Vue Avenue in Ringwood, Melbourne. Firefighters rushed to the scene to put out the blaze but it was too late to save baby Roland, reports 9 News.
This is 3yo Roland Sakhawang. The little boy was tragically killed in a shed fire.— Cassie Zervos (@cassiezervos) September 25, 2022
Police say his death is a shocking accident and they’re not treating it as suspicious.
His father provided this photo, as he paid tribute to his “energetic, bubbly” son.@7NewsMelbourne pic.twitter.com/ejMcRECMom
According to Roland's father Siang Sakhawang the family was having a barbecue. Siang went inside to "retrieve something or go to the toilet" leaving Roland unattended only for a few minutes and there was a fire by the time he returned. Smoke erupted from the shed in Siam's backyard and he saw a light flash through the glass. He ran out looking for his son. Neighbors who heard the explosion also joined the frantic search. 'Heaps of people tried to help. People walking their dogs and other neighbours ran in with hoses,' one resident said, per Daily Mail. They tried desperately but could not save the child.
According to 7NEWS, Siang's wife and three other children were at church while he stayed back to cook the family barbecue. The devastated father remembers his son as a "very happy, energetic boy" who "adored his siblings." Although he could not speak yet, he made his family very happy. "Just from his behaviour, his actions, not just the family but anyone who met him (he made) very happy." Siang remembers that his son "was happiest when watching birthday cake cutting videos."
An investigation is ongoing to determine the exact cause of fire which is not treated as suspicious.
The family is part of Melbourne's tight-knit Burmese community and members will begin two weeks of traditional mourning for Roland. Many community members came by the home and left teddy bears to pay tribute to the baby. Condolences poured in from the online community as well, many of whom were heartbroken to hear about the tragedy. In the comments section, one person wrote, "Rip little boy! May the family find comfort on this most difficult times! So sorry for your loss …" Another added, "Sweet little guy! What a drastic death of such an angel! Really heartbreaking. May this angel's soul rest in peace." A third shared, " So sad. High fly with the angels, little one. Condolences to family." Anyone who has information regarding the incident or witnessed the incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers.
RIP little one.
Cover Image Source: YouTube | 9 News Australia