Six Coffeyville firefighters are honored with Lifesaving Medals for their efforts in a November house fire.
Three people were in the house at the time of the fire, while six firefighters sprung into action. Two of the victims succumbed to their injuries sustained in the fire, but one life was saved thanks to the emergency responders’ heroic efforts.
In a social media post on Facebook, the City of Coffeyville writes:
“Fire Captain Rex Reardon and his crew – Jon Graham, Kevin Midgett, Jake Dean, Eric Fritz and Caleb Horn – were presented with medals during the Tuesday City Commission meeting for their actions in saving a life during a structure fire in November.
The 911 call came in early on the morning of November 24. A two-story house at 1508 South Willow was on fire with people trapped inside. The Coffeyville Fire Department was dispatched and six firefighters quickly left the station in E-3 and E-1. Also notified were off duty fire personnel along with the South Coffeyville Fire Department and CRMC EMS.
When firefighters arrived, flames were shooting out a second floor window. Firefighters Eric Fritz and Caleb Horn set up a ladder and entered the window where they found two female occupants. Fire Captain Rex Reardon and Lieutenant Jon Graham and Driver Jake Dean assisted with getting the occupants down the ladder and into ambulances.
According to a report by Fire Chief Bob Roesky, a neighbor notified CFD there was still a male occupant inside the house. “Lieutenant Kevin Midgett entered the second story window and located the male,” stated Roesky. “Kevin got him out of the house and was assisted by firefighters down the ladder where he was then loaded into the ambulance.”
Coffeyville Police Department officers Justin Hanigan, Brian Twitchell, Russell White and Lieutenant Darin Daily were on scene where their normal duty in a structure fire is to set up a perimeter to block traffic. With all the firefighters working to rescue the occupants, the officers jumped into action. White pulled fire hose, and he and Hanigan put water on the fire until the additional firefighters arrived. All four officers assisted with loading victims in the ambulances.
Chief Roesky was going to drive one of the ambulances to CRMC, however, his assistance was needed in the back with the patients. Officers Twitchell and Hanigan drove the ambulances to CRMC which allowed all the EMT’s to be with the patients.
All fire victims were transported to CRMC, and two were life flighted to Tulsa. The fire eventually claimed two lives, however, the third victim has been released from the hospital, and she is recovering from her injuries.
“You are heroes,” said Mayor Paul Bauer as Chief Roesky presented the medals. “It is a privilege, and we are all proud to honor the heroic efforts of the three firefighters who entered the burning two-story house to rescue the occupants, and the three who got them down the ladder and into ambulances,” said Bauer. The lifesaving awards were presented as a representation of the training and dedication the firefighters displayed in the rescue and the saving of a human life.
Bauer also noted that letters of commendation from Police Chief Kwin Bromley will be given to police officers Twitchell, White, Hanigan and Daily in recognition of their assistance at the scene.
Pictured: Fire Chief Bob Roesky, Captain Rex Reardon, Lt. Jon Graham, Firefighter Eric Fritz; Driver Jake Dean and Firefighter Caleb Horn.”