A breathtaking fire rescue caught on camera, and seen around the country, received special recognition in DeKalb County, Georgia on Tuesday.
“I’m extremely proud to honor the more than 60 firefighters that worked together on that cold January 3 morning to rescue more than 100 residents,” said DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond.
Thurmond proclaimed Jan. 23 as DeKalb County Fire Rescue Day. It was a moment to commend the firefighters involved in saving lives at the Avondale Forest Apartments.
“I’m proud of these individuals each and every time,” said Chief Darnell Fullum with DeKalb County Fire and Rescue. “They do this all the time.”
Among those honored was Captain Scott Stroup, a third-generation DeKalb County fireman with 26 years of experience.
“As firefighters, failure is not an option,” said Stroup. “It never crossed my mind, anything else other than getting that child to safety.”
Stroup is now best known for his life-saving catch. Destiny Ragland, 3, was tossed to safety from a third-floor balcony engulfed in flames.
“The highlight of my career was meeting the family, not the catch, the burning building or accolades we’ve received for this event, but actually getting to see that little girl smile and play with her siblings. Wow,” said Stroup. “That’s all I needed right there.”
Also recognized was Captain Jackie Peckrul, a mother of triplets who caught a baby while on a ladder.
“The DeKalb County Fire Department is just the most amazing fire department in the world to work for,” said Peckrul.
“This was the Super Bowl for us,” said Chief Fullum. “This was catching babies, literally, rescuing people from ladders, something every firefighter dreams of doing because at the end of the day, they’re not here for the pay, they’re not here for the accolades, they really do want to serve the community.
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