Ronald S. Whisenant, 14, schoolboy, saved Thomas J. Royer, 87, from burning, Los Angeles, California, February 8, 1959. While alone in his home where he was recovering from a hip injury, Royer accidentally set fire to the living room sofa. Using a wheel chair, Royer moved to the kitchen with one of the burning cushions as flames spread to the living room wall and thence to the dining room. Royer then attempted to leave, but the chair became wedged in the kitchen doorway. His groans were heard by Ronald, who had been attracted to the front door of the dwelling by the dense smoke. Attaching a garden hose to an outside faucet, Ronald sprayed water ahead of him as he crawled through the door into the living room. Passing within two feet of the flames, he crawled 25 feet to Royer, the hose extending only to within eight feet of him. Ronald freed the wheel chair and, with Royer in it, pulled it after him as he started crawling back to the door. The dense smoke allowed him to breathe only near the floor, but he dimly could see the hose, which he followed. Again passing the flames, he crawled to the door and thence from the dwelling, drawing Royer in the chair after him. A man who had telephoned the firemen tried to enter the rear door of the dwelling. Ronald heard the sounds and thought another person still was inside. He retrieved the hose and, again spraying water ahead of him, reentered the living room. Plaster from the ceiling fell near Ronald, who heard the firemen arrive and then left the dwelling. The firemen, wearing smoke masks, extinguished the flames, which had spread from the living quarters to the attic. Royer was hospitalized for burns and recovered.
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