Patrick J. Rimoshytus helped to rescue Carolyn Corbett from burning, Warren, Rhode Island, December 19, 2012. Corbett, 68, remained in the driver’s seat of her car after the vehicle struck the car stopped in front of it. Her car remained in acceleration, causing its spinning front wheels to erode to their rims, dig into the asphalt, and start a fire in the vehicle’s undercarriage. Flames soon spread into the passenger compartment. Driving nearby, Rimoshytus, 43, retired firefighter, saw smoke at the scene and stopped. Donning a firefighter helmet and jacket that he had been transporting, he went to the driver’s door of the burning car, but flames issuing from its undercarriage and heat drove him back. He then approached the passenger side of the vehicle, opened the front door, and leaned inside. Unsuccessful in his attempt to unlatch Corbett’s safety belt, Rimoshytus withdrew to search for a knife. He then returned to the passenger door and entered the vehicle again, that time kneeling on the front passenger seat. By then, flames had grown and spread to Corbett’s attire. He grasped Corbett around the torso and pulled her, free of her safety belt by then, toward him. When he called for help, others at the scene reached inside the vehicle, grasped Rimoshytus by the arms, and pulled him with Corbett out of the car and to the ground. Flames grew quickly to engulf the interior of the car. Corbett was hospitalized for treatment of extensive burns and died two days later. Rimoshytus was hospitalized overnight for treatment of first- and second-degree burns, to his legs and right hand. He recovered.
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