Cairo firefighters pull man from burning home - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Cairo firefighters pull man from burning home

By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

CAIRO, GA (WALB) –It's a call a firefighter remembers forever. Two Cairo firefighters recently pulled a physically disabled man from his burning home. Because of their actions, the man is still alive but he remains hospitalized with serious burns.

It's a call they'd trained for their entire careers. It was a challenging call in which firefighters battled thick smoke, deadbolt locks and burglar bars, but their determination paid off and they saved a life.

For a firefighter, every call is urgent but when these firefighters found out someone was trapped inside a home, they moved even faster than normal. "Whenever you are training to be a fireman they tell you this kind of thing can happen its just something that doesn't happen very often," said Firefighter Lance Butler.

In fact firefighters say they don't recall ever having to rescue a person from inside a burning home in Cairo, but they were ready regardless. "Any firefighters first priority no matter what is life safety," said Butler.

Once they got to the home, firefighters immediately ran into several obstacles including heavy smoke, dead bolted doors and burglar bars on every single window and door. "The burglar bars really presented a problem for us," said Chief Fielding.

But that didn't stop the men from pushing forward and using everything they had to get into the home. "It was a brick house and it never did vent, so the heat was really staying inside," said Dusty Sheffield.

Police said they heard the victim near a door under the carport but bars were in the way. "We immediately tried to figure out how we could get in and get that person out," said Butler.

When firefighters realized tools weren't working they used their hands to remove the door. "We still don't know how they did it," said Chief Fielding.

And just inside the door is where Lance Butler and Dusty Sheffield located the unconscious victim."We got him all the way out to the carport to where the ambulance crew got him," said Sheffield.

That's when they realized they saved a man's life. "It puts you on cloud nine, it is an overwhelming feeling," said Butler.

"I can go home at night and say I've got two firefighters that saved a mans life," said Chief Fielding.

But they say it wasn't just them, it required the help from every single firefighter there and together they were able to save someone's life.

Firefighters remain in close contact with that victims family, they say about 80 percent of his body was burned but he is currently stable and is showing signs of improvement at the Augusta Burn Center

Firefighters believe the cause of the fire was from grease while the victim was cooking.

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