By WCCO-TV Staff

LIBERTY TOWNSHIP, Minn. (WCCO) — Authorities in northern Minnesota say the bodies of two children were recovered Thursday from the wreckage of a house fire.

The Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office says that the bodies were found around 1 p.m. at a home on the 9000 block of Pony Lake Road Northwest in Liberty Township, which is about 15 miles northwest of Bemidji.

Fire crews had responded shortly after 6 a.m. to battle the fire. They found the home’s second floor fully engulfed in flames, which eventually destroyed the home.

For several hours, the two children were unaccounted for until crews found their bodies.

A GoFundMe page says the victims were two sisters, spending the night at their grandmother’s house while their mother wrapped gifts and prepared for Christmas.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families during this difficult time,” Sheriff Ernie Beitel said in a statement.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.