Huge Fire Destroys Home Of Adopted Children In Binghamton

03.18.11 | Sarah Harnisch

A raging fire engulfed a house in Binghamton in 30 seconds-- from it's roof to its front porch-- claiming the life of a 17 year old boy who had been adopted from Russia. The house was home to a family of 7-- but was entirely gutted; despite the efforts of 3 civilians and 2 police officers. It was a neighbor who heard popping in the wee hours of the morning. He grabbed his dad and they rushed to get 6 of the 7 out of the house. He said "me and my father found a ladder and put it on the back porch to get as many people out of there as we could. All you could feel was the flames. You didn't really think about it. When we got over there it was spreading-- it was spreading really fast." No one could find 17-year old Jeffrey Aissa, who died in the blaze. Family members say this house was special. Mom Maureen Aissa was a retired former State Supreme Court clerk, who had adopted 8 children from various parts of the world. Jeffrey was adopted from Russia at the age of 2. Police said they believe the burning was an act of arson, because another house was set on fire just blocks away 15 minutes later. The house was so damaged it had to be destroyed for safety reasons.