Teen, 17, saves elderly couple from trailer fire

Sept. 3, 2013 at 2:01 PM
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MAHWAH, N.J., Sept. 3 (UPI) -- A New Jersey teen with designs on becoming a firefighter got a head start when he rescued an elderly couple from a fire in their trailer, police said.

Morgan Herndon of Mahwah, N.J., was pulling into his family's driveway early Sunday morning when he noticed what he initially thought was a campfire at his elderly's neighbors' home across the street. The Cliffview Pilot said Herndon walked over to investigate and found the husband standing in the doorway. The home's porch was in flames.

He ushered the man to safety and despite the flames and heavy smoke rushed into the trailer and picked up the 87-year-old woman inside, who police said was trying to save her three cats, hauling her to safety.

"There was fire everywhere, smoke everywhere," Herndon said. "I picked up the woman and carried her out."

Mahwah Police Chief James Batelli said the fire was caused by linked extension cords. The elderly couple escaped without injury but the cats perished.

Herndon's mother, Mary, said she's in awe of her son's bravery.

"He brought me to tears when he told me the story," she said. "Proud does not describe the feelings I have."

For his part, Morgan Herndon, who turns 18 in a few days, said he felt good about his actions -- and added he plans on visiting the local fire station to inquire about how to apply for a job.

"I was just thinking about them and their safety," he said. "I asked them both if they were all right. Then I told them, 'Don't worry.' Then the police pulled up. It was later on that I felt really happy about what happened."

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