Friends and family are trying to come to terms with the loss of a young girl, killed in a fire Thursday night near Adrian, MN.
Family members couldn't find 10-year-old Perri Heideman as a fire spread outside their home.
A few hours later, her body was found among the large, round hay bales.
A life lost too soon. Perri's older brother Ethan tells me she was an easy-going little 10-year-old girl. She loves to play with farm animals and most of all loved being around others.
Smoke still billowing -- it's an eerie sight as Ethan looks on. Just 24 hours ago, he had no idea he'd be standing where he is now.
"As we were picking the bales away, one by one, about 9:30 when we found her -- laying on the ground," said Ethan.
A brother's worst nightmare.
"Just hoping that it wasn't really real I guess," said Ethan.
One day later, Ethan is wearing a brave face. His youngest sibling lost -- but not forgotten. As Ethan explains, it was love at first sight with Perri.
"My parents did foster care and we had taken her in and we pretty much fell in love with her right when we got her and that's -- we knew that -- my parents pretty much that she was meant to be for us to have her. And so she's been my sister ever since," said Ethan.
A smile glued to her face and endless giggles, 10-year-old Perri was a happy little girl.
"What didn't she like to do. She pretty much liked to do anything. I guess she liked to go to the lake and have fun. And she just pretty much liked to be where everybody else was it. It didn't really matter to her what it was, she just loved to be there," said Ethan.
And Perri's smile will live on forever in everyone's lives she touched.
Ethan says he couldn't be more thankful for the community as they continue to show their support to his family in this time of need.