BUSHWICK - Fire officials say the fatal Bushwick fire that killed a Guyanese immigrant and his 12-year-old nephew was caused by a candle.
Sunday's blaze was reported shortly after midnight. The fire killed Shawn Monderson, 33, and Cemioni Fraser. Relatives say the two moved into the apartment at 1214 Hancock St. just last week.
Investigators say the blaze tore through the second-floor apartment and quickly spread through the rest of the building and an adjacent house. Officials say that while the second-floor apartment had smoke detectors, there were no batteries in them.
Cemioni, Monderson's nephew, was living with his uncle because his mother had returned to Guyana.
"It's a family tradition that we look out for each other," Frederick Monderson, Shawn's uncle, told the Daily News. Shawn Monderson had recently become a U.S. citizen, according to his uncle.
Bushwick blaze claims 2 lives