14-year-old risks life to save disabled man, dog in fire
A brave Bay Area boy is being called a hero after risking his life to pull a disabled man and his dog from a burning building. He ignored the danger and a Fairfield man is alive tonight because he did.
Latrell McCockran and his friend, Isaiah Taylor, were enjoying their first weekend of summer vacation when Isaiah’s mom, Rhonda Evans, came running in.
“And I said, ‘Get here, it’s a fire! It’s a fire! Get here now, it’s a fire!” Evans said.
McCockran, a 14-year-old student at Fairfield’s Golden Hills High School, grabbed a fire extinguisher and ran to the apartment of his disabled neighbor.
“I saw the guy kind of stumble and it was like, ‘he’s out of it, he’s been breathing in all the smoke inhalation,'” McCockran said.
McCockran had to crawl under the smoke to reach 62-year-old Richard Smith.
“He said, ‘Get the dog, the dog.’ So I had to run in there a second time to get the dog, and as I ran in there to get the dog, flames started coming out of the room from the roof and the stuff just started to fall,” McCockran said.
With gases building up in the apartment, McCockran was keenly aware he was about to risk his life. He got an A in science where he learned about the physics of fire.
“It already had the smoke, which is gas. If it would’ve had enough oxygen, it would’ve combined and it would’ve blew up,” McCockran said. “So if it would have sparked just like that, the whole house would have gone up in flames. I would have gotten backdrafted.”
“Of course, he did save my life because I was going to walk right into the blaze,” Smith said.
“I can’t sit there and let somebody die,” McCockran said.
The fire department says McCockran without any formal training understood and executed the same maneuvers firefighters are trained to do.