Neighbors save Chinese immigrants from fire in Marshall-Shadeland
Quick thinking by a high school sophomore and his adult neighbor saved three Chinese immigrants from a Christmas afternoon fire that gutted their Marshall-Shadeland home.
Daring Pittsburgh firefighters scrambling up ladders to gush water into the flames saved the house next door.
Juvon Knight, 15, a student at Homewood's Student Achievement Center who lives nearby, spotted smoke curling out of a three-story building at 1404 Marshall Ave. about 2:45 p.m. and yelled for help. Hearing the calls, Garrick Mitchell, 58, ran out of his Atmore Street home and saw flames shooting from the upper-floor window.
“I heard someone yelling, saying that someone was still trapped inside,” Mitchell said. “So I ran in and got into the stairwell. There was this Asian man up there in the kitchen. He couldn't communicate, except in broken English, but I yelled at him, and we were able to run out there. We heard this popping sound, and the roof was on fire.”
That popping sound, said Knight, was the building's air conditioner. It exploded as flames veined the walls and sparks shot out from the wiring, shortly before Mitchell and three other men burst out of the smoke to safety.
Four Pittsburgh fire engines arrived almost instantly after that, Knight and Mitchell said.
“It was blazing away,” Mitchell said. “But the firefighters responded really well. They were all over it.”
While hoses surged water into the home, firefighters hurled a large television through a scorched window frame and then hacked away at siding and roof tiles, spraying fingers of flame whenever they darted out of the mist.
“It was a full-blown fire on the third floor when we got here,” said city Fire Battalion Chief Rich Rutkowski. “I'm glad to say that there was no damage to the adjoining house.”
Like Mitchell and Knight, the chief praised his firefighters' response. Investigators were still probing the cause of the fire and had no estimate of damage on Tuesday.
The residents of the house could say only that they were immigrants from China and had no idea how the fire started.
Carl Prine is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7826or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pittsburgh police break up customer fights over Air Jordan 11 shoes
- Pittsburgh adjusting to new bicycle lane, ‘stop boxes’
- Environmental teachers glean new ideas from networking
- Icy roads, cold causing school delays, wrecks in Western Pa.
- Brashear High ‘little libraries’ program rolls out
- German firm Nextbike to provide first 500 bikes for Pittsburgh sharing program
- Pittsburgh fraud case, Uganda-based counterfeiting racket linked
- Second African penguin chick hatches at National Aviary
- Newsmaker: Cindy Marzock
- The Exchange offers reward for information that leads to the arrest of person who shot Ross clerk
- Fall from Hazelwood roof kills man