CENTEREACH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A 66-year-old Centereach woman trapped in a house fire was rescued by two police officers and a neighbor who climbed to her rescue.
Suffolk County police said the officers, Frank Saracino and Keith Murphy, responded to a 911 call at the home at 36 Forest Rd. around 3:15 a.m. Sunday. The house was completely ablaze, and the woman appeared to be stuck on the second floor.
The officers and a neighbor who lives across the street found ladders and were able to climb up and get her, CBS2’s Cindy Hsu reported.
“He said the smoke was coming fast and furious and the flames were behind her, so he picked her up, put her on the ladder and on the way down, the ladder gave way,” Kenya Earl said.
Earl said her husband, Adrian Earl, took the brunt of the fall and both he and the woman, Rosemarie Donnelly, were transported to Stony Brook University Hospital with back injuries.
Earl said her husband didn’t stop to think about his own safety when he saw his longtime neighbors in trouble.
“It was a lady in a burning house, so he had to go and help,” she said.
Earl said she couldn’t be more proud of her heroic husband.
“(How do you feel about what he did?) That’s why I married him. He’s a great guy, I don’t expect anything less from him,” she said.
Four other occupants of the house were able to get out on their own. Donnelly’s husband and grandson were also treated at the hospital.
Other residents on the street said the Earls have always been good neighbors.
“It’s great living next to a guy that doesn’t think about it. He just reacted and you know, he saved a life,” said Jason Fernandez said.
One of the family’s dogs died in the blaze. Two others were rescued.
It’s believed the fire may have started in the kitchen, CBS2 reported. The cause is still under investigation.
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