Georgia fire that killed mom, son caused by tossed cigarette, officials say

A fire that engulfed a Georgia home Saturday morning, killing a mother and her son a day after, was caused by a lit cigarette that was tossed into a trash can, officials said. 

The home in Spalding County went up in flames about 9:30 a.m., according to Fox 5 Atlanta. Firefighters tackled the blaze that quickly spread to the roof of the home. 

Christie Lewis, 44, was found unresponsive inside the home. Her son, Zachary Shavers Tobias Sevenstar, 6, was also discovered in the home suffering from severe burns.

Firefighters performed CPR on the boy and rushed him to the hospital. However, he succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced dead Sunday afternoon, according to Fox 5.  

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Fire officials said the blaze was caused by a cigarette that was "improperly discarded" into a trash can in the home's kitchen, Fox 5 reported. 

"I just can't believe this has happened. We are all taking it really hard... she was loved by a lot of people, and ministered to a lot of people," family friend Dianne Miller told Fox 5. 

Lewis' husband, Jimmy Lewis, told the Atlantic Journal-Constitution that his wife attempted to save their son by shielding him during the fire. 

"She was a good person and a beautiful person and she loved life," Lewis said. 

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