Raymond Joseph saved Daija L. Golfin from burning, Tampa, Florida, May 31, 1999. Daija, 2, lay unconscious on the floor of a second-floor bedroom in her family’s two-story apartment after fire erupted in an adjacent bedroom. In a nearby apartment, Joseph, 30, construction worker, heard Daija’s mother scream for help, and he immediately responded to the scene. After helping the mother escape the building through a second-floor window, having reached her by climbing a tree next to the building, Joseph entered the apartment through a first-floor door. He crawled up the stairs, then into the bedroom where Daija lay, but he could see nothing in the dense smoke. Joseph crawled throughout the room before brushing against Daija’s foot. He then picked her up and carried her downstairs and outside to safety. Daija was hospitalized two days for treatment of smoke inhalation, and she recovered. Joseph also recovered from having inhaled smoke.
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