‘Hero’ mom dies after saving her five children from burning house (photos)


A mother-of-five is being praised as a hero after she tragically died moments after saving her children from a horrific house fire in Russia.

The fire started late at night on Wednesday when the family were sleeping in the city of Yakutsk, far east Russia.

Gulnara Kostelnyuk, 31, was killed in the blaze when the burning ceiling collapsed on top of her, Mail Online reported.

Moments before she died, the woman managed to evacuate her children, aged under 14, from the burning property and took to them safety.

Firefighters who responded to the fire incident said the fire started in the kitchen from a heating stove and quickly tore through the wooden house blocking the exit.

The property was engulfed in flames and filled with thick smoke when Gulnara’s older son, 14, was awakened by thirst and alarmed his mother, according to local reports.

After realising they were trapped in a burning room, Gulnara rushed to a window and broke the glass. She helped her older son to climb outside through the window then passed him his four younger siblings.

After evacuating her kids, she was killed when the burning ceiling collapsed on top of her just before she could escape from the building.


Reports said her body was found by a crew of firefighters, who were called to the scene by neighbours.

One of the children, a nine-year-old girl, was admitted to intensive care with burns and carbon monoxide poisoning. Her condition is moderate, doctors said.

The other children, two boys, aged six and one, and a four-year-old girl, received cuts to their faces and limbs.

Gulnara’s devastated husband Aleksey Kostelnyuk was at work when the fire burst.

He told local media: ‘My wife had been taking care of our children. I don’t know how we will handle it without her.’

The victim’s older sister Anastasia told: ‘My mother called me about 4am. She told me that Gulnara was gone.

‘We told the younger kids that she is in a hospital. We do not want to traumatise them.

‘The older boy is still in a state of shock. His mother died in front of him. He does not speak and does everything automatically.

‘Next week he goes to a psychologist.’

The mourning relatives say Gulnara will be buried on Saturday, November 28th

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