Kevin, 55, Jennifer, 51, Robert, 19 and Cameron Dunsmuir, 16 all died inside their home in East Gwillimbury, Ont., about 50 kilometres north of Toronto early Friday.
David Dunsmuir, 24, is the only surviving member of the family and he was away at university.
Emergency crews received the call from the Dunsmuir home at around 5:30 a.m. ET.
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East Gwillimbury Fire chief Ken Beckett confirmed that it took a crew of five men about 12 minutes to arrive at the scene.
Twenty-five minutes later a crew of 25 also arrived, but it was too late to save the Dunsmuir family.
All three of the East Gwillimbury's fire stations are staffed by volunteer firefighters, according to the town's website.
The small community has about 80 volunteer firefighters and about six fulltime staff.
The stations are typically staffed between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., according to Beckett.
Beckett says that there have been talks of expanding service in the area and that perhaps this incident will give more urgency as to the need for it.
A statement from the town of East Gwillimbury released today said that the way that their department is staffed is normal for a town of their size.
"This makeup is typical for smaller communities in Ontario," said Deputy Fire Chief Phil Dawson in the release.
"Our firefighters are highly trained and very dedicated. They live here and they know the people here. They were on scene within 12 minutes of the call and they made a heroic effort to deal with this emergency."
Hundreds of people from the community gathered in Newmarket, where the Dunsmuir boys went to school, for a vigil. On Saturday neighbours bgean leaving flowers in front of the home that remains under investigation by fire officials.Suggest a correction