EDMONTON, Alberta, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- A 24-year-old woman was saved by a group of players from the Edmonton Eskimos Sunday as she leaped from the fourth floor of a burning apartment building.
The players all live in the building. Police say they formed a chain with their arms to catch Teri McLeod to break her fall. It is likely the group's action saved her life.
"I tried to get out of the apartment but the hallway was black with smoke," MacLeod said. "It was getting hotter and hotter in the hallway so I went back into the apartment and went to the window. I decided to jump. They put their arms together to catch me. They broke my fall. I didn't have time to think about what I was doing. It was amazing. They had their hands out ready for me. I felt I was going to be safe, and I am."
Unfortunately, a man also living in the building jumped as well and wasn't as lucky. He died from his injuries.
"I was up on the seventh floor when I heard a thump," said linebacker Sheldon Benoit. "I looked out the window and I could see some legs sticking out. When we got down there his head was all busted in."
"We're not heroes," said running back Ron Williams. "We didn't do anything no one else would have done. It was something tragic that happened. Even though you save a life, another was lost. It was just a catch."
The Edmonton Journal reported the players also helped convince other panicked residents not to jump, to stay where they were until help arrived.
Firefighters climbed ladders to pluck five other trapped residents from their windows and take them to safety.
The paper said six people went to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation. None were seriously hurt.
Arson investigators have called the blaze suspicious.