THE husband of a mother-of-three who perished in a house fire has paid tribute to a "wonderful woman who lived for her kids".
Jackie Ramdane died after a blaze engulfed her home in early hours of the morning, while she slept in her bedroom.
Her children Kenza (15) and Isam (13) survived after they jumped from an upstairs window.
Emergency services rushed to the scene at Monastery Grove in Enniskerry, Co Wicklow, at 4.15am where firefighters battled the blaze for more than three hours.
Ms Ramdane was overcome by fumes and her body was discovered in her bedroom at the rear of the house.
Gardai believe a cinder from the fireplace may have caused the blaze.
The 47-year-old, who had worked for broadband operator Imagine, had lived in the semi-detached house for the past 13 years. Her eldest child, Ben (20), is returning home from Spain after he was told of the tragedy yesterday.
Husband Mohammed Ramdane, who is originally from Morocco, said his children had tried to save their mother before escaping but were beaten back by the flames.
"The heat was so intense that they couldn't breathe. The kids ran to the window in my girl's bedroom at the front of the house and opened it," he told the Irish Independent.
"Both of them were calling out Jackie's name but it was dark, and they couldn't see where they were going.
"She answered them back while they were at the window. Jackie was in her bedroom at the back of the house and the kids and her were talking.
"The kids were screaming 'come to us' but she couldn't because of the smoke, and there were no lights so they couldn't see anything. They said she suddenly stopped talking and they didn't hear anything after that."
Both teenagers were later treated for minor burn injuries at Our Lady's in Crumlin.
"The kids are still in hospital but they are deeply shocked," he said. "They have burns on their hands and they inhaled a lot of smoke so doctors will keep them there for another two or three days. They had called me at 4.45am this morning and I came straight down to the house.
"It was too late, though, as the fire was too intense and the guards wouldn't let me near the house.
"Jackie and I had separated, and I currently live in Bray, but I have only good memories of my wife. Nobody could say anything bad about her because the children were her everything. She was just a great person in every way."
By Mark O'Regan