Boyd Gavin rescued Travis Pittman from burning, Hampden, Newfoundland, October 10, 1995. Travis, 2, and his infant brother were inside their family’s one-story house after an electrical fire broke out in the living room. Flames spread quickly. Working outside in the neighborhood, Gavin, 47, construction supervisor, discovered the fire and ran to the scene. Knowing that the children were home, he shouldered open the front door and entered the house. Flames by then had reached the doorway; dense smoke precluded visibility inside, and heat was blistering. Gavin dropped to his hands and knees and went along the floor of a hall as he followed the sound of Travis’s voice. Finding Travis at the end of the hall, Gavin grasped him with one arm, then crawled back to the door. The door had closed while Gavin was in the house, giving him difficulty in removing Travis to the outside. Gavin then searched for Travis’s brother but was repelled by smoke. The house was destroyed by the fire, which claimed the life of Travis’s brother. Travis and Gavin both sustained smoke inhalation and were hospitalized for treatment of first- and second-degree burns, Gavin remaining in the hospital for a week. They recovered.
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