An 8-year-old hero was killed while rescuing his family from a fire in Penfield, New York. Witnesses said Tyler Doorhan woke up at around 4:45 am to find his grandparents’ mobile home in flames. He alerted his relatives and helped them to safety. However, two people remained trapped inside the home.
As his grandfather was disabled, Tyler ran back inside to help. Unfortunately, he, his grandfather, and another relative, were overcome by the flames.
Before he was killed, the 8-year-old hero rescued four adults and two young children from the burning home. The survivors were transported to a local hospital for treatment. However, their injuries were not life-threatening.
Tyler Doohan, Louis Beach, and Steven Smith, were killed in the devastating blaze. As reported by CBS News, nine people were inside the home when the fire began. As mobile homes often burn quickly, it is amazing that six people survived.
Firefighters responded within minutes but the fire was already out of control. Chief Ebmyer said his crew could not get inside the home, as the “fire [was] rolling the entire length of the trailer over their heads.”
When the fire was extinguished, authorities found at least one dead dog inside the home. Neighbors said the family had numerous pets, including at least 10 cats. A local rescue group responded to the area to search for the missing animals.
Although the cause of the fire is still under investigation, authorities believe it was accidental. It appears to have started within the home’s electrical system.
Tyler Doorhan is being remembered as a true hero. East Rochester Interim Superintendent Richard Stutzman described Tyler as “a caring individual.” He said he is not surprised that the 8-year-old risked his life to rescue his family:
“To go running back in there it’s quite something… It’s probably not what you teach in fire school, however he did it and that’s how we’re going to remember him; he wanted to help his grandfather.”
The tragedy is devastating for the entire community. Family, friends, and neighbors, left flowers and stuffed animals next to the charred remains of the mobile home.
The flag at the elementary school is flying at half-staff. Stutzman said counselors are available to help the students and staff cope with the tragedy.
A memorial fundraiser was also started to help the family cover Tyler Doohan’s funeral expenses. His relatives said they want the 8-year-old hero to have “the service he deserves.”