In 2015, a fire broke out at an apartment building in Chattanooga, TN. Vernon Lane was fleeing from the building when he realized that other people needed help.
A lieutenant with the Chattanooga Fire Department, Lane’s instincts took over and he stopped to help his neighbors.
One woman, trapped by the fire on the third floor of the building, was completely panicked, thinking she and her baby wouldn’t make it out alive. She did the only thing she could think of: She threw her baby out the window, then jumped herself, hoping someone would be there to catch them as they fell.
Luckily, Lane was in the right place at the right time.
He saw the baby falling and sprang into action. “My instinct told me just to dive, just dive and try to catch the baby,” Lt. Lane tells Channel 3 News. “I felt the weight of somebody’s body come down on my back as I was getting back up, and I realized it was the mother of the child.”
Lane went to visit the mother and the child afterward in the hospital — they both survived thanks to Lane’s fast actions. But Lane was suffering from injuries himself, and after 16 years as a firefighter, was forced to give up his career.
“Firefighters have to be 100 percent. We have to be able to lift heavy weight, climb up ladders, and crawl,” explains Chris Adams, the fire chief. “We have to be able to bend and distort our bodies in any kind of fashion, so the public expects us to have 100 percent of that ability when they respond and we expect that.”
While it must be heartbreaking for Lane to have lost the job he loves, the chief has no doubt that if Lane could go back in time, he wouldn’t change a thing.
This is the story of a truly heroic man. If you think Lane did something incredible when he put his life on the line for a mother and her baby, don’t forget to SHARE this story!
[H/T WRCB Channel 3 News]
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