Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

American hero: Tyler Doohan, 8, saves six people from New York house fire but dies after trying to save disabled grandfather

Tyler Doohan went back inside the bedroom of a burning trailer to try and save his grandfather
Tyler Doohan went back inside the bedroom of a burning trailer to try and save his grandfather

Tyler Doohan, aged eight-years-old, saved six family members in a New York house fire but died while trying to save a seventh person - disabled grandfather.

Emergency services were called to attend a fire in Penfield in East Rochester after the blaze broke out in the early hours of Monday morning at a house trailer.

Once inside, fire crews discovered the Tyler's body close to the bed of his grandfather, Louis Beach. 

Investigators say Tyler died alongside Beach, 57 and Steven Smith, 54.

Fire crews attending the scene of the blaze where Tyler Doohan died Penfield Fire Chief Chris Ebmeyer said the eight-year-old was at the trailer, where eight other people were all staying, visiting family when the fire started.

Tyler managed to wake six people and alert them to the fire, who all escaped from the trailer. One woman was treated in hospital for second degree burns, Mr Ebmeyer said.

Tyler went back in to assist his disabled grandfather, who would have been unable to get out of bed alone. His aunt followed him in but was unable to see him once inside the smoke engulfed property, CNN reported.

"By that time, the fire had travelled to the back of the trailer," Mr Ebmeyer said. "Unfortunately they [Tyler and his grandfather] both succumbed to heat and smoke."

The cause of the blaze is still under investigation.

A statement released by the East Rochester Central School District, which Tyler attended, said: "It is extremely important to remember that according to emergency personnel, (Tyler) was the person who discovered the fire and tried to wake the eight other people in the residence at the time.

"In bravely and selflessly giving his own life, he was able to save the lives of six others, and he is truly a hero."

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