Among heavy smoke and flames, a Tempe fire fighter was seen rescuing an American flag before it caught on fire at a Phoenix recycling plant on Tuesday.
Nick Ells, a captain with the Tempe Fire Department, can be seen carrying Old Glory over his shoulders as he walks through puddles of water with a cloud of dark smoke behind him.
The image was shared on Facebook by Adrienne Berman who posted it with the following message:
"Amongst everything going on last night in the recycling plant fire, my captain Nick Ells saw that the American flag was about to be caught in the fire and decided to go in and get it."
About 150 firefighters helped fight the flames at Arizona Pacific Pulp and Paper on Tuesday afternoon, and among those was Ells.
On Facebook, people commented on the image of the captain with the flag.
"Wow, wow!! Really touches my heart bc I now know people who have died to protect that flag and what it stands for!" one Facbeook user said.
Fire crews remained overnight at the recycling center by pouring water on the wind-driven fire, which burned bales of cardboard and other materials. The fire was 100 percent contained come Wednesday morning, but crews remained at the scene to mop up hot spots.
Fire Capt. Aaron Ernsberger says there are no reported injuries and that state officials have said there were minimal environmental impacts.