Joseph Anthony Jones saved Misty M. and Destiny Mathews from burning, Fruitdale, Ohio, January 30, 2011. Mathews, 23, and her daughter, Destiny, 4 months, were passengers in a sedan that collided head on with another vehicle at night in a rural area. The car left the highway and came to rest upright on the shoulder, where it soon caught fire at its front end. Jones, 51, production manager, heard the accident from his nearby home. Dressed in nightclothes, he immediately responded to the scene, where he found Mathews partially extended through the opened front passenger door, her legs caught in the wreckage. Despite flames entering the vehicle at the dashboard, he leaned inside, freed Mathews, and pulled her to safety. Jones then returned to the car, leaned inside again, and tried unsuccessfully to free Destiny’s car seat, which was secured to the back seat of the vehicle. As flames were spreading, he withdrew and broke out the window of the car’s rear passenger-side door. After clearing away the glass, Jones extended his body to the waist inside the vehicle and freed Destiny from her seat, flames encroaching along the car’s ceiling. Jones backed from the vehicle with Destiny and took her to safety moments before flames grew to engulf its interior. Mathews required hospitalization for treatment of her injuries, and Jones hurt an arm while breaking through the window. Destiny was not injured.
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