A man shocked onlookers, after he climbed a 19-storey building in the suburb of West Powelton, Philadelphia, to save his bedridden mother from fire.
The dramatic scene came, after a fire which is thought to have started in a rubbish chute, broke out at around 9.30pm on Thursday. The blaze was however under control by 10.56pm.
“SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) buses were on location and we put some of the evacuees on the buses where the air conditioning was on in the buses so SEPTA helped us out,” said Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small.
“There was a recreation centre in a nearby building that had air conditioning to house individuals that were temporarily evacuated.”
Speaking to ABC News after showing off his bravery, 35-year-old Jermaine narrated how he got a call from his sister who told him that their mother, 65-year-old Sheila, who is bed-ridden, couldn’t get out of her 15th floor apartment. The roofer and construction worker alleged that after he got to the apartment, the police didn’t allow him to pass through the front door.
“They said the elevators are not working. I said, ‘No problem. I’ll take the steps. I just want to make sure my mother- my mother is sick, she’s bed-ridden. So I need to get up there. They were like, ‘We can’t let you in.’ I took it upon myself because that’s my mother. There’s no limits. That’s my mother.”
Jermaine was actually using a pair of crutches as he’d cracked his hip when he fell on a set of stairs earlier that day, but according to him, his adrenaline took over after he took the decision of climbing the building to save his mother.
“All for my mom’s safety, period. I wasn’t worried about mine at all. She can’t get out of the bed or walk around so if there’s a fire she needs help out,” he said.