Michael D. Wilps helped to save Herbert Reinhardt III from burning, Glenolden, Pennsylvania, August 16, 2000. Reinhardt, 30, remained in the driver’s seat of a van after the vehicle left the roadway, struck and knocked over a fuel pump at a service station, then crashed through a concrete-block wall of a building housing an office. The van came to rest partially inside the building and caught fire. Driving in the vicinity, Wilps, 41, roofer, stopped at the scene when he saw what he thought was a burning building. He entered the smoke-filled office through its front door, found the burning van inside, and approached its driver’s side. Reinhardt was conscious but trapped in his seat as flames filled the van’s cargo area. Wilps extended his upper body through the window of the driver’s door and grasped Reinhardt. He freed Reinhardt, then pulled him partially through the window. Another man entered the office and approached the van. He too grasped Reinhardt, and together the men fully removed him from the van and carried him outside to safety. Taken to the hospital for treatment, Reinhardt sustained a laceration to his right wrist, from which he recovered, and he and Wilps singed their hair.
74708 – 849174708-8491