December 28, 2015 Webster, Mass Police officers responded to a house fire around 12:45 P.M. where residents had been unable to get out of the home that was engulfed in flames. With the fire department still minutes away the three Officers didn’t hesitate to risk their own lives to save others.
The three heroic Officers Spencer Donovan, Rob Larochelle and James Young Sr. arrived at the scene of the house fire where the smoke was so think that they couldn’t see inside. But they had been alerted by neighbors that there were people inside.
Officers rushed inside and were hit immediately by the billowing smoke and had to crawl to locate the first victim who was on the floor unconscious. Officers started dragging her outside but became overcome with smoke and had to leave, taking shifts in dragging the woman from the building before they too fell.
Eventually they were able to get her out. Officers also saw a second woman attempting to make her way out of the building however the smoke was so thick that as she was trying to navigate her way down the stairs they could only see her legs, they couldn’t even see her face. One officer quickly grabbed her by the arm and rushed her to safety.
One neighbor named Shelia Dunn said “I saw them take the person and saw them perform CPR on her,” and another named Linda Brooks said “They just rushed right in there, there was no hesitation at all. It was really good to see that, how they just do that, to save other people.”
As far as what the Officers thought about running into a burning building or being a hero they said: “I don’t have any other way to explain it. You don’t think about it. You just go in,” Officer Young explained. “Didn’t put much thought into that really. Probably a good thing I didn’t,” Larochelle said about running into a burning building. Although he was the first to enter the blaze and “As soon as I opened (the door) I got hit with smoke and heat, and I dropped to the ground,” and Officer Donovan says “Everyone says (we’re) ‘heroes.’ I don’t like to use that word. I think everybody in this police department would’ve done the exact thing,”
Two of the Officers had to be transported to a local hospital where they were treated for smoke inhalation and released.
The victim that they pulled out of the house was taken to a local hospital where she was last listed in critical condition.
Photo Credit: CBSBoston