Toddler dies in Calera fire

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 10, 2005

A photograph says a lot about Alex and Michael Taylor.

Their strawberry blonde hair, the innocent grins – all pleasant reminders of the two toddlers.

&uot;Those kids loved everyone,&uot; neighbor Donna Talley said.

Sadly, Alex died too young. He was the victim of a trailer fire that occurred last Thursday evening in Calera.

His brother, Michael, and father, Shannon, were also taken to a local hospital with injuries.

Shannon was released a short time later, while Michael was sent to Children’s Hospital. According to media reports, both individuals were burned.

One neighbor who helped with the rescue said Shannon desperately tried to rescue his children once he noticed their Marydale Lane trailer was on fire.

&uot;He dove in there and tossed the two babies out. Then he came back out,&uot; neighbor Ben Talley said.

&uot;He tossed the two children out the window.&uot;

According to neighbor Tammy White, Shannon was at his vehicle when he noticed the fire. He dove into a back bedroom, where the children were apparently located.

&uot;If anybody could be called a hero, it’s the father,&uot; Ben Talley said. &uot;And I don’t use the term hero too much.&uot;

Neighbors stated the Calera Fire and Rescue Squad arrived quickly and administered aid to the victims.

They were first transported to Shelby Baptist Medical Center and later to Birmingham hospitals.

The Calera fire and police departments along with state fire marshals are still investigating the case. Calera Police Chief Jim Finn said Monday the fire is apparently accidental.

&uot;There’s no reason for us to think there is anything suspicious at this time,&uot; he said.

The fire marshal’s office is taking the lead role in the investigation and could have a final report in a couple of weeks.

Alex is survived by his parents, Shannon and Jennifer Taylor; his twin brother, Michael; and numerous other family members.

A graveside service was held Monday at Pinelawn Gardens for the child.

A full obituary appears on page A-5 of the Reporter