Kent Deskins saved Dorthea M. Burch from burning, Wingate, North Carolina, February 11, 1990. Dorthea, 11 months old, was in the living room of her family’s townhouse when fire erupted in the adjacent kitchen and filled the unit with dense smoke. Deskins, 25, a machinist who lived nearby, was alerted to the fire and went to the scene. Despite the smoke and growing flames and intense heat, he crawled into the living room and, guided by her cries, found Dorthea on the couch. He picked her up and turned to retreat but sight of the door was lost to him in the smoke. Dropping to the floor, Deskins crawled to the wall and followed it back to the door. He then left the townhouse with Dorthea. Deskins was treated for smoke inhalation and minor burns to his arm and face. He recovered.
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