ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Darius Dillard and Nate Willams were sitting on a porch on Emerson Street in Rochester when they saw smoke streaming from the second floor of a home across the street.
While their uncle called 911, they bounded over and without hesitation kicked in the door and sprinted inside to find a family confused by the orders they were now being given.
“They were trying to get stuff out of the house and we were like, ‘No, you don’t have any time to get anything out of the house, you just need to get out of the house and go because I don’t want none of you to get burnt or nothing,’” said Williams.
“Downstairs it was clear because they didn’t even know it was upstairs only, but when we went upstairs it was dark, you couldn’t see, the smoke, once it got in your lungs, it was hard, we could have passed out,” said Dillard.
The two young men tried to put out the fire, but smoke chased them back downstairs.
That’s when the first fire truck pulled up.
Fire crews had the fire knocked down in minutes and soon determined an electrical issue started the blaze.
The one adult and four children inside made it out safely and the Red Cross is taking care of the family for now.
Firefighters caution against trying to put out fires alone, but commend Dillard and Williams’ bravery.
“I think it’s awesome that they sprung into motion and tried to make sure they wasn’t anyone inside and got them out, they did something about it,” said Jim Ryan, Rochester Fire Department’s deputy chief.
As for the young men, they don’t think what they did was anything remarkable.
“I was just trying to get everybody out of the house and make sure me and my neighbors were all right,” Williams said.