Hero Paramedic Pulls Two from Burning Building
Pulaski County Daily News via YellowBrix
March 30, 2010
WAYNESVILLE – A fire in Waynesville early Thursday morning has displaced several families and put two people in the hospital. It could have been a much different story if paramedic Mike McCart hadn’t acted quickly to save them.
Mike McCart is a jack of all trades. He is not only a paramedic, but a former volunteer firefighter and a member of task force one. He is trained in all aspects of rescue. That training helped save the lives of two people stuck on the second floor of the Shannon Valley apartments in Waynesville after a fire broke out around midnight.
McCart recalls the event. “So I went up, one of the Waynesville firefighters came up behind me, to support me. We got the young lady out first, got her down the ladder, handed her off, went back up for the gentleman, heavy smoke coming out of the room, he was having a lot of trouble breathing, so we reached in, and got a hold of him.”
With the flames growing and time running out, McCart knew he had to get to the victims fast. He didn’t even have time to put on any protective gear.
“I was more worried about getting the victims out, trying to get them out the window, than worried about myself,” McCart said. “I was on the outside.” He would never call himself a hero, but the two people lucky to be alive might have a different opinion.
McCart would rather focus on the team effort that made the situation a success. “The quick response, the teamwork, everybody working together-that’s what it’s all about.” Waynesville Fire Chief Douglas Yurecko believes McCart is indeed a hero. “In all honesty, he didn’t have the proper protective gear on,” Yurecko said, “but he still did the job..and that’s a true hero.”
The two people he saved were eventually transferred to St. John’s in Springfield. One firefighter was also taken to the hospital to be checked out after the fire, but was released.