Sheriff: Good Samaritan enters burning home, saves disabled resident in ‘true act of heroism’

HANNA CITY, Ill. —  A man who decided to stop as he drove by a burning home in central Illinois ended up saving the life of a wheelchair-bound resident in a “true act of heroism,” according to a Facebook post by the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office.

Eric Arnold noticed a large amount of smoke coming from a home in Hanna City as he drove by, the post says, and he decided to stop and make sure everyone made it out of the building instead of continuing on his way.

Arnold and neighbor Richard Hess were looking for occupants when they noticed a “wheelchair bound owner inside,” according to the post, and Arnold broke a window, climbed into the burning house, and guided the individual to Hess to pull them out.

In its post, the sheriff’s office credits the pair with saving two lives, although they don’t mention who the second individual was.

“Fire wasn’t on scene until after the two occupants were outside and safely away from a fully engulfed house fire,” the post says. “Eric and Rich saved two lives today!”


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