By Alan Shope, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -
A Kansas City Animal Control officer is being called a hero after he helped save a family from a burning home Wednesday morning.
Kansas City, MO, Fire Chief Floyd Peoples said the blaze started on East 96th Terrace, just off of Blue Ridge Boulevard and East Bannister Road, when a space heater caught a mattress on fire.
But it's what happened after that had one Kansas City worker doing a double take.
Durand Edins could not believe what he saw while driving his work route Wednesday morning.
"I don't know what was going on with the mattress, but he pulled it out and it was on fire," Edins said.
Edins saw a homeowner desperately trying to fight a fire while pulling a flaming mattress out the front door. He quickly slammed on his breaks and sprung to action.
"When I went to get my radio to call for help, he actually went back in the house. I went in to get him out, I asked if anyone else was in the house, he said his sister," Edins said.
After locating the sister, Edins did all he could to keep the man from going back into the house for pets.
"His face was burnt up pretty bad so basically I tried to keep him safe and out of the fire," he said.
Firefighters are praising Edins for how quickly he responded and for keeping the man from going back inside. The homeowner told Edins he didn't have insurance and that's why he was dragging the flaming mattress all the way through the house and out the front door.
Edins said he instantly knew it was serious and he had to help.
"I didn't think, I just pulled up and thought about somebody's life and I just wanted to make sure all human life was out," he said.
The homeowner was taken to the hospital with severe burns to his upper body and face. The sister was not harmed.
The home did not have any working smoke alarms and is being called a complete loss.
Firefighters add that a person should never try to drag anything that's burning out of the home and doing so will most likely spread any fire. They always recommend calling 911 and getting out of the home as soon as possible.
Copyright 2013 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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