James H. Jackson rescued Francis J. White from burning, Andover, New York, October 25, 1963. When White, 30, trucker, lost control of his tractor-trailer truck the vehicle struck a concrete abutment, careened wildly, and stopped diagonally across the highway with the cab jackknifed against the trailer. The vehicle’s two fuel tanks contained a total of 55 gallons of fuel, and the trailer tank contained 5,000 gallons of emulsifying oil. Leaking fuel which had caught fire had left a trail of flames as much as 20 feet high, and an explosion spread flames over the trailer and the cab. Jackson, 28, factory laborer, was attracted and drove to the scene with his wife. Moving to within 15 feet of the cab, Jackson saw White inside, unconscious and with his clothing afire. Although he noted that one of the fuel tanks behind the cab appeared to be intact and feared it might explode, Jackson ran through oil leaking from the trailer and reached the left cab door, which was ajar. Flames four feet high burned atop the cab and on the hood, while others extended into the cab through the broken right window. Heat was intense. Jackson opened the door fully, stood on a metal step below it, and extended his upper body into the cab. He felt his hair being singed as he beat out the flames on White with a woolen jacket. Jackson pulled White to the open door and out of the cab. He slipped but did not fall in the oil as with effort he dragged White 20 feet. Another man aided Jackson in carrying White farther away. Firemen arrived and extinguished the flames, which by that time completely covered the vehicle and had set fire to the leaking oil. White recovered from his injuries and extensive burns. Jackson sustained a burn on his face which healed.
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