Last Man Out
They were calling the other pumpers. They called 12 and then Then 15 started relocating and we relocate after We turned on Spring Street. They said Number 6 come to the fire. They said for us to go ahead and relocate to Number 11, and they called 19 into the fire. So 19 went. As soon as we got over the bridge, we could see the black smoke.
It was jet black. They called for Number 6 to come to the fire for manpower and come into the front of the building. When we got there, my captain and the firemen were already dressed. I was still in my regular uniform. They took off and went to the front of the building. That fire was burning pretty good. They went ahead and I was a couple of minutes behind them. I was walking up to the engineer pumping Number I said, boy, that's a bad fire.
Last Man Out
The captain of Number 11 was coming out. I got to the front door and there was a man standing there and I'm not sure who this man is. I don't know if he was the owner or the manager. He said somebody's inside the building because his car is still in the parking lot. I said, there's firemen in there right now and I'm fixing to go in. I threw my mask on, grabbed my pike pole.
Smoke was rolling out the front. When you went into the front door, the smoke was tailing to the back. I mean it was just pulling to the back. It kind of made a little silhouette of the doorway, about five feet in and then it went jet-black smoke. I went in and I was dragging my foot on the line and I got in about 20 feet. I reached down and picked up the line and followed the line and went all the way to the back of the store. It's just not straight back.
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It's just swerving. It had just a little narrow walkway that you could walk through. Just enough for me to fit through and the hose. I got all the way to the back. There are so many pumpers there at this time. There is a doorway going back to where the nozzle was where they were fighting the fire.
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I'm figuring there's a bunch of firemen right there. When I got to that point, I broke away from the line. I had a pike pole and I started pulling on the wall. There was a sheetrock wall that went all the way to the back. I walked over about I'd say between 10 and 20 feet. I took the pike pole, started ripping the wall. I must have hit that wall about four or five times. I'm reaching for the ceiling now and I thought I was pulling ceiling. I just didn't know how many people were there. I didn't want to get mixed up with them.
I just was gonna tear some of the wall out. I started feeling the heat. I'm gonna start seeing fire and I can holler back to these guys. I got fire on this end, is what I was thinking. But I hit it four or five times. A fireman comes up to me on my left side and grabbed me and he's in panic and said I'm running out of air and I'm lost.
Then, at the same time, another firefighter comes up and then another one comes up to my chest. I can't remember who they are, but the one that comes up to my chest he just grabbed me, said I'm fixing to run out of air, I'm fixing to run out of air. I could grab one and one dropped down, went underneath my legs. This is in a matter of seconds that they just spun around and ran. The other one ran another way. I wasn't sure how many it was, but I know it was at least three. So they pulled away and went, and this one went and they were all in a panic. All of their vibra-alarms were going off, every one.
If I took a flashlight and put it on my mask, I couldn't even see the light. It was just that quick. It was all of five seconds this happened in.
It kind of got me turned around and I'm looking for the hose. I'm lost. I made like five circles back to the right. I backed up and I got into the furniture and I said no, I'm not getting in the furniture. I went back to where I was pulling the wall and I started making circles to the right. I made the sixth circle and I ran into the hose. Right when I hit the hose, somebody else ran into me and said I'm running out of air, I'm running out of air and I'm lost. I don't know where I am. I grabbed him. I said I've got the hose right here.
He knocked me off the hose, so it took me a minute to find the hose. I felt around. I found the hose again. I reached down, picked it up. I started walking back. I didn't know which way to go, so I started walking back. These guys coming up has really got my head kind of messed up.
I started going back through a doorway with this guy. I have to be going the wrong way because I don't remember this doorway. I turned around on the hose and I started coming out. He kept on screaming. If he didn't say it one time, he said it times, I'm fixing to run out of air. I started walking and got about 20 feet. I said I got to be going the right way. I kept on going and going and I got about 20 feet from the door and you could hear the engine out front.
Number 11 was out in the front. You could hear the engine.
Series Nineteen, Episode Three
The fireman just broke away and ran for the door. It was a lighter black, but you still couldn't see. I couldn't see my light at all. He ran and he said he went out a window. I just followed the hose on out. When I got out, I asked him if he was all right and he just said thank you, thank you and he had his hands on his knees and he had his mask ripped off because he was out of air.
He was done.
I threw my mask back on and I went back in the building following the hose. My captain was back there and the fire started getting so hot he had to come out. He was having problems too. He came out. The hose was all wound up. That's what was getting a lot of people lost. He was trying to feel his way around this hose. His mask started sucking to his face. He just got up and ran and started hurdling the furniture. Thad, our fireman, he had the hose. The captain ran into him and he said I'm out of air, I'm out of air.
Thad goes I got the hose right here. He just pushed him out the way. I was coming in on the hose and he ran into me. When he ran into me, he grabbed my little pressure hose. He said I'm fixing to run out of air. I said I got the hose right here. I grabbed him and I started walking with him. He's pulling on my little pressure hose. I stopped him. I said hey, you got to quit pulling.
You're pulling my mask off my face. I'm fixing to run out of air. I said all right, but quit pulling on my hose. We don't know who each other are. He's going to get the hell out of there. We ended up walking. We get about 20 feet from the door. He breaks off and starts running just like the other guy, and he runs out the front door. When I came out the front door and I looked over there, he had to rip his mask off. I turned around to go back in again. When I looked at my air, I only had pounds. I was the last man to go in and I only had pounds, so all these guys were in there way before I was, so they were definitely already out of air.
I turned around to the assistant engineer and said get me a bottle. He got me a bottle. I told Thad we were going back in. Thad just come out too, and he put a bottle on me and when I stood up, the whole building lit up all the way across. Could you feel the heat? I never got on my knees at any time. I could tell it was getting hot. I'll tell you it was so hot all my stickers on my helmet were curling over.
Then it kind of zigzagged a little, snaked in there. You couldn't just walk straight through there. You said you were pulling the ceiling down and you could feel the heat? I was just jabbing into the sheetrock. What I was doing, it was jabbing in the room where they had the fire.
I was jabbing. That's where I was getting the heat from, but I didn't know that until everybody was sitting there telling us what was what. I was coming back over here to get with these guys, figuring we were going to get the hell out of there. That's when Walker ran into me. I was just as lost as any of these guys were at this time. When I found the hose, then Walker ran into me. Walker hit me so hard that he pushed me off the hose. I had my foot on the hose. I just had found it. Then we hit together. It was just pure luck.
He said that what he did is he was following the hose out and the furniture had got pushed over the hose in a couple of areas and he climbed over the furniture and when he got on the other side, there wasn't any hose. Leo Henderson Killed by balls fired from a Cricket practice machine. Fitz Theara Stabbed through the heart with a cricket stump.
Last Man Out
Ben Jones. Butler Styles. Cilla Troughton. Elliot Luthando. Germaine Troughton. John Beachwood. Kia Luthando. Melody Henderson.