Greene County deputies, passerby honored for swift actions in helping family escape house fire
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Two Greene County deputies and a passerby helped save three people from a house fire just west of Springfield last week.
On Friday, the Brookline Fire Department held a special recognition ceremony to recognize the two deputies who sprung into action, Cpl. Paige Rippee and Deputy Timothy Hamp, and passerby April Young.
The fire department also invited the survivors of a house fire to meet the heroes who saved them.
Robert Wilson, his wife Marilyn, and his sister, Dorothy Wilson, were all asleep when April Young happened to drive by on Farm Road 129 and see the smoke and flames.
“That lady was at the right place at the right time,” said Robert. “All I heard was them yelling, we had a fire.”
April called 911. Corporal Paige Rippee and Deputy Timothy Hamp showed up before firefighters.
“She was already out in the yard, and she came up to me and she said, I can’t get anyone to answer the door,” said Cpl. Rippee.
Corporal Rippee was able to rouse the Wilsons, and April and the deputies began quickly working to get the three residents and their three dogs out. But Marilyn needed her wheelchair.
“I had the chance, I could have went out the back way. I would not…. Because they was going out the front with her, and I wanted to make sure they got out,”
“Her wheelchair was right by where the flames were, so she sat down and I told her to hold on, and I kind of propped her back and wheeled her right out of the house and everyone got out safely.
Brookline Fire Chief Jamie Kilburn decided these heroes deserved recognition.
“I did not know that that had occurred until days later, so that says a lot for our deputies in this area and our people that live in this area. They’re not out for the fame of the glory. They were out to help,” said Kilburn.
The state fire marshal even came for the occasion.
“Anytime that we can show our appreciation in a heroic type event, I think as a State Fire Marshal, we should recognize that,” said Tim Bean.
“They need to be recognized for the fact that they did something that, maybe a lot of people wouldn’t have done,” said Kilburn.
The fire that started from a wood stove rendered the Wilson’s home unlivable, but they say that they’ve been able to get another house through the same landlord on the same road.
“We don’t see this very often. Thanks to a good Samaritan willing to stop and help, and the teamwork among first responders,” said Cpl. Rippee.
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