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Good Samaritan helps woman during Fayetteville apartment fire

Posted October 3

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— A Good Samaritan attempted to rescue a woman Monday morning when flames and smoke engulfed her apartment.

Officials say a resident was trapped in her second-floor unit in Fayetteville's Oakridge Place apartment complex located at 412 Oakridge Avenue.

Around 8:30 a.m., another resident, Evalene Smith, called 911 when she heard her neighbor screaming for help.

"I heard her voice screaming, and when I came outside I basically saw her hanging out the window with smoke coming out [from inside]."

Kevin Stanley was working nearby and heard the screams, too.

"A lady was hanging out her window yelling, 'Fire! Fire!,'"he said. "When I turned around, there was smoke barreling out of her apartment, so I ran over there and ran up the steps and kicked her door in."

Firefighters had not yet arrived when Stanley attempted to enter the building. According to Stanley, flames and smoke pushed him back as he tried to break down the door.

"There was so much fire and smoke," he said. "I crawled about five feet in there on my knees, but there was just too much smoke. I'm not a fireman, so I just backed out and let the firemen do their jobs when they got there."

Stanley says he stood outside and talked to the woman until help arrived.

"Her face was all black with soot, so I told her if they didn't get here in a minute she may have to jump out the window," he said.

Firefighters arrived at the scene a short time later, and the victim was able to climb down the ladder to safety on her own. Officials say she was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center for smoke inhalation and is expected to be okay.

Firefighters also rescued the victim's dog. The dog received an oxygen treatment at the scene and is also expected to be okay.

Officials are still trying to determine what caused the fire.


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