Ghanaian community gathers to mourn 6 lost in Belmont fire

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BELMONT -

Community members and dignitaries gathered at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church Saturday night to mourn the loss of six Ghanaians who lost their lives in the Prospect Avenue fire.

The Ghanaian community said it was shaken by the loss after the Belmont apartment went up in flames, killing 13.   

The six immigrants were identified as Gabriel Yaw Sarkookie, a 48-year-old Uber driver trying to provide for his family in Ghana; Solomon Donkor, 49, and his 12- and 17-year-old children, William and Hannah; Justice Opoku, 54, also couldn't make it out of the building; and 28-year-old Army National Guard soldier Emmanuel Mensah, who has been labeled a hero for helping save nearly half a dozen people from the fire before losing his life. 

Mensah's father attended Saturday's service and spoke to News 12 about his son. 

"He's the kind of guy that always wants to help people out…I think he did what he was supposed to do and I miss him a lot," he said. 

Funeral arrangements of Mensah have not yet been finalized. Justice Opoku and Gabriel Sarkodie will have a joint funeral on Jan. 20. 

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