OLD TOWN, Maine — The woman and two children killed in a fire late Monday night have been identified as 34-year-old Maiysha Somers-Jones, Isis Doe, 10, and her 8-year-old brother, Zebulon Doe.

Somers-Jones is the girlfriend of the children’s father, who was not at home at the time of the fire, Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland said in a press release issued Tuesday night.

Fire marshals have been joined by state police in the investigation, which continues, McCausland said. Investigators plan to return to the house on Wednesday.

Autopsies were conducted Tuesday in Augusta by the state medical examiner’s office, but no information was being released.

Investigators found “no signs of any working smoke detectors” in the house, according to an earlier news release from the state fire marshal’s office.

Neighbors spotted the fire just after 10 p.m. Monday at the white two-story Cape-style house located at 15 Bradbury St. Firefighters found two children, a boy and a girl, in an upstairs bedroom and removed them from the house. However, “resuscitation efforts were not successful,” the release from the fire marshal indicated.

They also found a woman’s body in a first-floor bedroom.

The victims’ names were withheld by authorities until late Tuesday so relatives could be notified first.

Two Old Town women, who live in the neighborhood and whose children attend Old Town Elementary School, said parents had been informed Tuesday morning that the children who died in the fire were a second-grader and a fifth-grader at the school.

“This kills me. I have a baby of my own,” said Erica Strickland, whose 8-year-old daughter is an Old Town Elementary School third-grader.

“When kids are involved, it tears my heart out. It makes me want to cry,” she said as she teared up and her voice got hoarse.

Old Town Elementary School is a prekindergarten-through-grade-five school with an enrollment of about 550, including fourth- and fifth-graders from Alton and Bradley.

Principal Jeanna Tuell confirmed Tuesday afternoon that parents were informed of the tragedy before the school day began through RSU 34’s One-Call-Now telephone notification system.

“We let them know before school started what we knew, that two of our students had passed away, a second- and a fifth-grader, and we told them that we were going to meet with [students] today,” Tuell said in a telephone interview Tuesday afternoon.

Tuell was not immediately able to talk about the children who perished because their names were still being withheld at the time. She did, however, offer the following:

“They were new to our school, but it didn’t take them too long to make an impression,” she said.

Tuell said that parents were advised that staff had a script to help them break the news of the tragedy to the older students but that those working with kindergarten and first-graders would tread lightly.

“We really felt like the teachers, unless it was brought up to them, were kind of going to shelter them from that, and we told our older kids that our younger kids might not know what happened so we had to be careful of what we said to them,” she said.

“But the big messuage was that out firefighters really work hard in our community and that we know them and that we love them and that we know that they work hard to save lives, but sometimes fires get out of control and they can’t do that,” Tuell said.

“We wanted to make sure that [students] understood that we work really closely with the fire department. They come and do all sorts of activities,” last month’s Fire Prevention Week visit among the most recent, she said.

“We take care of our kids here and not just their educational needs,” she said. “We’re taking care of their emotional needs, their physical needs. We’re feeding, we’re clothing them, but we’re loving them, too. So this cuts pretty deeply into the heart of what we’re all about.”

Tuell said that all of RSU 34’s counselors were on hand at Old Town Elementary School and met mostly with fifth-graders. She said, however, that the Old Town-area school district received offers of help from school counselors in Orono, Milford, Bangor and other communities as far away as Ellsworth.

“There’s some real community support when something tragic like this happens, and the community is not just Old Town but the surrounding communities,” she said, adding, “People are generous.”

With the support being provided them, “the kids are doing really well now with the sadness they are experiencing. Kids are pretty resilient. What I find is that if you talk with them, they can be pretty matter of fact — and practical even — about how they view life and death.

“It’s the adults who sometimes have a hard time,” Tuell said. “When you say goodby to your kids on a Monday, you expect to see them on a Tuesday.”

Old Town Fire Chief Steve O’Malley said that the house and an attached shed were fully ablaze and that the house was filled with thick smoke when fire crews arrived.

He said Old Town firefighters were assisted at the scene by members of the Orono, Milford and Bangor fire departments, the Old Town Police Department and emergency medical personnel from Capital Ambulance and the University of Maine. A few firefighters suffered minor injuries but did not require a trip to the hospital.