Gerald Yourczek, 42, forester aid, helped to save Freda Anderson, aged 82, from suffocation, Ely, Minnesota, January 15, 1969. When fire broke out in her second-floor bedroom, Mrs. Anderson was overcome by smoke. Her daughter attempted to go to her aid but was prevented from doing so by the smoke and flames. Yourczek and a companion arrived and learned of the situation. They went to the second floor and tried to get to the bedroom but became greatly affected by the smoke and returned to the first floor, A third man arrived. Yourczek and his companion each put a wet towel over his head and went back up the stairs. The third man followed. All inhaled smoke and, coughing violently, retreated to the first floor for air. Yourczek and the other two men, each then with a wet towel over his head, ascended to the second floor and began crawling toward the bedroom. Yourczek’s companion crawled into the room, located Mrs. Anderson on the floor, and dragged her to the door. Yourczek was there and pulled Mrs. Anderson into the hall as his companion returned to the first floor. In dense smoke in the upstairs hall, Yourczek and the other man dragged Mrs. Anderson to the stairway. Choking and nauseated from the smoke, they then carried her down the stairs. Mrs. Anderson was hospitalized for smoke inhalation. She recovered.
51005 – 564651005-5646