Two deputies of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office used torches in a smoke-filled room to save a child’s life after pulling him through the window of the burning home.
The deputies were first to respond to 9937 Joe Ebert Road in Seffner, FL, where they found a home that was fully engulfed in flames at 10:48 p.m. on 19th May.
Occupants and neighbours were standing in the yard of the residence yelling that a child was still inside.
Deputies forced entry into the residence by breaking out a glass window. A 9-year-old boy was located near the window on the floor.
Deputy Kevin Reich and Deputy Alexander Maldonado, both employed with the Sheriff’s Office since March of 2020, instructed the child to come as close to the window as possible by following the light from their flashlights.
The deputies were able to grab the child and pull him out of the window, carrying him to safety. Deputies stayed with the child until paramedics with Hillsborough County Fire Rescue (HCFR) responded to the scene and provided him with treatment.
The child, his mother, and the homeowner were all transported to Tampa General Hospital for additional medical care.
The child remains in the hospital in severe condition due to burns and smoke inhalation. Both Deputies Reich and Maldonado were uninjured. HCFR took over control of the scene, and firefighters were able to safely extinguish the fire.
“I could not be more proud of the quick actions and bravery these deputies displayed, never giving up until they were able to pull the child to safety. It is because of their heroism that this young boy made it out alive,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister.
“Law enforcement officers are often the first to respond to any emergency scene, so we must always be ready to jump in and help. These deputies never hesitated. They are true examples of what it means to be a hero.”