William C. Williams, 43, clergyman, saved Samuel T. Thorne, Jr., 15 months, from burning, Charlotte, North Carolina, October 16, 1930. Samuel and his parents were asleep in a room on the second floor of an apartment house when the house caught fire at night. His parents awoke, and while his father telephoned to the fire department, his mother carried him into a room adjoining a hall, from which there was a stairway to the street. A sudden flare of flames and dense smoke poured into the upper part of the room from an adjoining room, and Samuel’s mother became panic stricken and dropped him. She reached the door into the hall but could not open it and leaned against it on the verge of collapse. Samuel’s father went to the room, called, became panic stricken, and then ran to a porch. He returned to the room several times but was forced back by flame and smoke. Williams and another man ascended the stairway, and Williams opened the door into the room. Smoke and heat rushed out of the doorway, and the men dropped to their knees. Samuel’s mother fell through the doorway and was caught by Williams’s companion and carried down the stairway. Williams heard Samuel cry. He lay prone and crawled eight feet under smoke and flames to Samuel and then, holding him, backed to the door and rushed down the stairway. Neither was burned. Samuel’s mother was revived. His father was rescued by firemen.
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