Neighbors say they woke up to the sound of crackling.
"I went on my porch, the house two houses down was just lit up in flames. I seen it in the sun porch area and then as I stepped up, I seen the whole house was lit up," said Amina Pearson.
"I woke up seeing a bunch of fire trucks. I saw flames coming out," said Benjamin Hoit.
Fire officials say four children live there but were not home at the time. The news of the fatal fire spread quickly. Firefighters had to keep family members away from the scene.
"As technology changes and word gets out, the family members knew that something had gone wrong and they showed up to the scene and obviously they were distraught by the situation because we were able to tell them someone was deceased," said Lt. Ted Kuppinger, Rochester Fire Department.
"It was very shocking to see something like that and to later find out the mother was in the house," said Pearson.
A firefighter was sent to the hospital to be checked out. Several agencies spent hours at the scene looking for clues.
"The Arson Task Force which involves the Rochester Police Department, the Rochester Fire Department, and the ATF Bureau investigate a lot of our fires. Any fatal fire is going to be investigated with a high degree of oversight because we want to make sure we get it right," said Kuppinger.
The home did have working smoke detectors. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.