Good Samaritans rescue 3 from fire

November 15, 2010 4:31:10 PM PST
A woman was rescued from a burning building on Chicago's West Side Monday morning. Three men, including two who were just passing by, helped get her to safety.

The woman is hospitalized in serious condition.

The fire broke out in the 3400-block of West Harrison.

This story could have had a very different ending had it not been for the bravery and quick thinking of three men. One had been doing work on the home, and the other two were on their way to work when they saw the flames. One of them told ABC 7 that he simply acted on instinct.

"That was a blessing. We just helped somebody. That's all. We did our best," said Good Samaritan Will Johnson.

Johnson does not know the three women who live inside this West Side home. But when he saw the flames on his way to work Monday morning, and realized the fire department was not yet on the scene, that did not matter to him. He

Johnson ran into the burning house to help any way he could.

"It's an adrenaline rush, because you think of it as it's your family, you know what I mean? If it's your family, you don't think. It's a reaction. It just happens," Johnson said.

The three women were still asleep on the first and second floors. They hadn't realized there was a fire burning below.

By this point Johnson and his friend had joined a man who had been working on the basement, Michael Magee. Unable to see, Magee tripped on the bottom steps trying to get one woman out. She dislocated her shoulder and suffered from smoke inhalation, but her son, David Holliday, says she will be ok.

"Lots of sentimental value is gone, and with the holiday season coming up, we don't know where we are going to spend it now," said Holliday. "But we are thankful mom is alive and healthy."

Luelle Holliday was recovering at Mount Sinai Monday evening.

The Holliday family has lived in that house on Harrison for over 50 years.

The fire department has not said what caused the fire, but it appears to have started in the basement where the renovations were taking place.


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