A former high school football player dove to catch a child who was dropped from the third floor of a Ignite building, CBS affiliate WWMT reports.
Philip Blanks, a former wide receiver for Kalamazoo Central High School in Michigan and a retired U.S. Marine, saved the child during an apartment in Phoenix. Bystander video of the July 3 f-ire and Blanks’ catch went viral. He told WWMT this week he was at the apartment complex to meet up with a friend for an early-morning workout. That’s when he heard screaming.
Without hesitation, Blanks raced over to catch a young child he says was “twirling like a helicopter” as he fell from the third floor balcony, WWMT reports. “People were screaming ‘there are kids up there’ and to throw the kids down,” Blanks said. “I saw another guy was standing there ready to catch the boy, but he didn’t look like he was going to do it, so I stepped in front of him. The way I caught him, I fell on my side, and of course disrupt his foot, but the most important thing is that his head was safe.”
Video shows Blanks cradle the child as he falls, then get up and run away from the building with the boy in his arms. Another video taken by a bystander appears to show a woman believed to be the child’s mother, Rachel Long, throwing her son over the balcony, CBS affiliate KPHO-TV reports.
The boy has been identified as a 3-year-old named Jameson, according to the station.
Long was on but went back into the apartment to save her daughter, 8-year-old Roxxie, her family told the outlet. Roxxie was saved by another good Samaritan, but the mother did not survive. Blanks also spoke to KPHO-TV on Wednesday, saying Long is “the real hero in this story, not me.” “She had the strength and the courage to get them outside — that’s powerful,” Blanks said. “To be in that type of situation and still care about life, not yours, that’s very strong of her. She’s a warrior.”
Blanks said after catching the child, he looked for a place in the parking lot to set him down, and someone opened up their car for him. Another bystander laid a wet sheet on the boy to help ease his pain from the burns, KPHO-TV reports.”For about a minute, I was just holding him as he was screaming and I was telling him that it was going to be OK, everything’s going to be OK,” Blanks said. CBS News has reached out to the Phoenix f-ire and p-olice departments.
This is how people reacted to this post:
Shirley Brown – Thank God for this man and the other man who saved the children. RIP to the brave and loving mother for giving her own life to save her beloved children.
Kate Brower – You were at the right place at the right time and had the guts to act. If I am not mistaken that is a hero!!
Mary Johnson – You are a hero and thankyou from everyone who sees what you did you are amazing
Cassie J. Mathias – Poor mom but she saved her babies.
Glad he was there just in time, to catch the toddler.
Tina Martinez – You are the Greatest,especially from these parents .hope that you know how they love you..Super Hero
R A – The Mother unfortunately depart. There were two child in the apartment along with the mother. The 3 yrs boy was caught, and another man rushed into the apartment fully engulfed in fla-mes and saved the 9yr old Girl.
Sabrina Sususa – I’m emotional after this..its just a so beautiful video everyone can learn from to act good and save others
Related Viideo :
This Article Was First Published on cbsnews.com