Rockdale County Fire Chief Dan Morgan says the mother, identified as 28-year-old Reba Glass, rushed upstairs and tried to get her five children out of the home, but was only able to save a 6-year-old boy by throwing him out of a second story window. The boy suffered a broken collar bone and transported to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston.
He says the mother jumped out of the window to escape the flames. Authorities say they tried to airlift her to a hospital but bad weather turned the helicopter around. The mother was then transported by ambulance to Grady Hospital, with burns to 40 percent of her body.
Authorities describe her injuries as serious.
"My prayers go out to the family, the kids that were lost in this tragedy. And like I say, I have eight grandkids myself. So one of my grandkids went to school with two of the kids, and my prayers just go out to the family. It's just a loss. We're just going to try to stick with the family," said neighbor Trena Clark.
Pastor Thomas Satterfield of Canaan Baptist Church said that the three older children would travel 12 miles by bus every Sunday to attend the church in Covington. He said all of the children were always happy.
Satterfield said his thoughts are with Darnell Glass, the 6-year-old who survived the fire but will have to cope with the loss of his siblings.
"His life will never be the same and he'll probably spend the rest of his life thinking about that," said Satterfield.
The pastor said he consoled Reba Glass at Grady's burn unit.
"She cried probably the whole time I was there," said Satterfield. "I think she understands that she did the best that she could but there's still a longing, the ‘what if question."
Reba Glass typically went to a church close to her home. The pastor of that church, Billie Cox, said that while she is suffering major pain from the burns, the pain in her heart is much worse.
The deceased children have been identified as 8-month-old Deon Glass, 3-year-old Amoni Roberts, 7-year-old Deshon Glass and 9-year-old Ah'Dariya Glass. Morgan says the children were found in two rooms of the home. A grandmother at the home was treated and released.
The cause of the blaze is under investigation.
A fund has been established to assist the family. Donations are being accepted under the "Glass Family Memorial Fund" at Wells Fargo Bank.