Eric Andrew Staten helped rescue Lori R. Walker from burning, Heber City, Utah, February 15, 2019. Walker, 37, arriving at her family’s vacation home with her children, smelled a strong odor of propane gas outside the home and entered to investigate. As Walker entered the log home’s basement a powerful explosion occurred, during which she was pinned by a collapsed floor and debris. Staten, 52, an off-duty firefighter and Walker’s neighbor, heard the explosion and quickly responded to the home. Learning from Walker’s daughter that Walker remained inside, Staten entered the home’s main floor and called out to Walker as he searched for her. Not immediately finding her, but hearing her call for help from below him, Staten exited the garage, as the home’s upper floors began to burn. Two neighbors, a river guide and a general contractor, had, by then, also responded to the scene. The men waded through deep snow to the rear of the structure where the contractor and the river guide entered a blown out window opening which they immediately entered to access the home’s darkened basement. Guided only by their cellphone flashlights, the river guide and contractor searched for Walker. Staten shortly joined them inside after the contractor found Walker beneath debris. By then flames had grown and spread to engulf the floors above them and fiery debris fell into the basement. Working together, Staten and the contractor removed debris from around Walker’s foot, allowing the river guide to pull her free. Staten placed Walker over his shoulder and, following the others, carried her back through the basement to the window opening. Walker was removed through the window opening and the men, using the guide’s coat as a sling to carry Walker, moved her through the deep snow to arriving firefighters and paramedics. The home was shortly engulfed by flames. Walker was treated at a hospital for burns to about one third of her body, broken bones, and serious injuries to her right leg and ankle; she continued to recover.
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