Three Richmond officers talk about saving elderly woman

By Tara Morgan - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - They risked their own lives to save an elderly woman from her burning home and three Richmond cops are being hailed as heroes!

The police officers were hurt when they ran into the smoke filled house on Edgehill Road in north Richmond and pulled her to safety. All three officers are back at work after being treated for smoke inhalation.

Without any protective gear, they went into the burning home to the second floor. They say it feels great, knowing they saved a life.

All in a days work! That's how these three Richmond cops see it, while others consider them heroes. Meet Sgt. Jean-Guy LeGouffe, Officer Jill Simons and Sgt. David Naoroz. Officer Simons got to the burning house on Edgehill Road first.

"You couldn't see in front of you it was that heavy," said Officer Simons.

Thick black smoke that only moments earlier kept a neighbor from a successful rescue. Sgt. Naoroz called out to the trapped elderly woman as he practically crawled his way to the second floor.

"Once you hit the landing you had to be at a crouch at a minimum," said Sgt. Naoroz.

But no one hollered back. Just then Richmond fire crews got there and a Captain came across what had worried so many.

"The first thing you hear him say is 'I found her'. I'm between Officer Simons and the Captain who found her and he's calling for help - you've got to do something," said Sgt. Naoroz.

Adding to the difficulty, a cluttered home.

"We had to clear a way back out of the house because there was a lot of clutter on the stairs we all grabbed a hold of her and walked her down the stairs as best we could," said Sgt. Jean-Guy LeGouffe.

All three officers were treated for smoke inhalation, but they'd do it all over again.

"I certainly see this as a team work kind of thing to the neighbors to VCU it is part of the job I think," said Sgt. Naoroz.

The elderly woman is still in the hospital. Fire officials say it could be days to weeks before she might be released. The cause of the fire is unknown.

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