La Verne police officers recount rescuing elderly victims from house fire

Friday, March 31, 2017 10:31PM
Two elderly women were saved from a fire that broke out in their mobile home, thanks to the quick action of two La Verne police officers. On Friday, those heroes were recognized for risking their own lives.


LA VERNE, Calif. - Two elderly women were saved from a fire that broke out in their mobile home, thanks to the quick action of two La Verne police officers. On Friday, those heroes were recognized for risking their own lives.

Cpl. Devon Harden and Cpl. Shannon Sullivan returned to the house where on Wednesday they rescued the two victims from the fiery scene.

Harden said he was in the area when he noticed a plume of smoke coming from the senior mobile home park at about 12:30 p.m. in the 4000 block of Fruit Street.

When he arrived, he found the home engulfed in flames and radioed for backup. He then went to see if anyone was inside.

"I started banging on the door, announcing 'this is the police, you need to come to the door,' and after about 20 seconds or so, somebody finally came to the door," he recalled.

Sullivan arrived shortly after but couldn't find Harden, until he realized his colleague was already beginning to rescue the victims.

As the officers coaxed the two frantic women from the home, they realized that one was unable to get down the stairs without her scooter and their help.

All four escaped the flames as the fire spread throughout the home.

"You could definitely feel the heat come in, and definitely the smoke was starting to become to a point where it was about to get overwhelming," Harden added.

The officers also managed to get the victims' pets out safely and helped neighboring residents evacuate safely. No one was injured in the fire.

The cause of the blaze was under investigation.
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