A devastating Bronzeville fire left a structure badly damaged and seven people injured, but everyone escaped the blaze alive thanks to the quick actions of a group of Chicago police officers.
“It was surreal. It was like a movie,” resident Dana Pierce said.
Pierce was sleeping inside of the building in the 4800 block of South King Drive Saturday night just before a fire ripped through the structure.
“I just had on my sleepwear and a t-shirt,” she said. “I had no coat on.”
Pierce woke up to find police officers at her door, yelling for her to get out of the building.
“They knocked on every door,” she said.
Pierce said the officers saved her life, but the fire devastated her home and destroyed some of her most prized possessions, including her son’s remains.
“I know people who say they are ‘just things,’ but some items I just can’t replace, including the remains of my son,” she said.
Firefighters responding to the scene weren’t able to save the structure, but did save nearby buildings by aiming water at nearby structures.
“It’s just devastating, but I take my hat off to firefighters. They did their job,” resident John Irving said.
Ultimately three police officers and four residents were treated for smoke inhalation. Even in the midst of the devastation, those residents are expressing gratitude for police officers who risked their lives to save those inside the building.
“They woke me up and I want to say thank you, thanks for running up the stairs to get me,” she said.