Friday, February 13, 2004

Woman leaps into arms of rescuer

By Jane Prendergast
The Cincinnati Enquirer

WEST PRICE HILL - One of six people rescued Thursday at an apartment building fire jumped from a second-story window into a paramedic's arms.

Paramedics Tony Morano and Lt. Steve Sammons were closest to the Coach Arms West apartments on West Eighth Street when the report of a fire and people trapped came a little before 8 a.m. They found residents - some elderly and disabled - at their windows yelling for help.

Morano told a woman to kick out the window and sit on the ledge. He planned to tell her to hang onto the sill with her hands so he could grab her feet. Instead, "she just went head-first'' into his arms, he said.

"I pretty much had to just hope for the best,'' said Morano, an eight-year veteran who works out of the Glenway Avenue station.

Five others were rescued by firefighters, said District Chief John Zompero. None was seriously hurt. One elderly woman was taken to University Hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation. Damage was estimated at $75,000. The cause was under investigation.


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