14-year old hero saves dog and man in fire

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By Nigel Boys

It’s not often in today’s selfish world that a person will put their own life in danger to save the life of another person, especially if they’re not trained to do so, but it’s heartwarming to hear of such bravery, especially when it comes from a 14-year-old boy.

Latrell McCockran is one of those audacious heroes of our times. The student at Fairfield’s Golden Hills High School was enjoying the first weekend of his summer vacation with his friend, Isaiah Taylor, when his mother, Rhonda Evans, started shouting that there was a fire.

Immediately the brave teenager went to see how he could help out and without a thought for his own safety went into a nearby apartment in Fairfield, California, to try and rescue his disabled neighbor, Richard Smith.

When he got to Smith’s apartment, McCockran saw that the 62-year-old man was struggling to get out of the building. Without waiting for further help, the courageous youth plunged into the apartment, keeping low to avoid inhaling too much smoke.

When Smith had been helped by McCockran safely out of the building, the elderly man asked about the whereabouts of his dog. Realizing that the animal was still inside the burning building, the brave youth again put his own safety in danger to save the life of Smith’s beloved pet.

When the hero of the day was asked later if he felt scared as he ran into the burning building during the daring rescue, McCockran replied that he never thought about his fear or the consequences of his actions. He added that he just knew that it was not right to sit there and watch someone die.

After the fire had been brought under control by the Fire Department, firefighting officials said that McCockran was not only brave, but clever, because he had done exactly what a trained firefighter would do in the same situation, without any formal training.

Apart from singed hair, Smith escaped injury in the fire because of the courageous actions of a teenage boy, and the hero of the blaze, escaped with minor injuries and smoke inhalation that were treated at a local hospital.

Without the fast thinking and courageous efforts of McCockran, the disabled, elderly man and his dog would not be alive today, according to Matt Luckenbach, Fairfield Fire Battalion Chief.

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