James Martin Fletcher rescued Jay P. McCarthy from burning, Goldendale, Washington, August 15, 2000. Jay, 14, remained in the cab of a pickup truck after it was involved in a violent collision on a two-lane highway with a tractor-trailer. Seriously damaged and aflame, the pickup was thrown to the side of the highway. The driver of the tractor-trailer, Fletcher, 51, stunned but uninjured, responded to the passenger side of the pickup, where he saw Jay in the burning wreckage of the cab. Despite intense heat, he repositioned Jay to free him, then pulled him out of the wreckage and dragged him away. Two other truckers who had been driving on the highway also responded to the burning pickup, and they rescued another 14-year-old boy. The boys were hospitalized for treatment of extensive and severe injuries, including third-degree burns and broken bones. The driver of the pickup was ejected from the vehicle during the accident and died at the scene.
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