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Neighbor helps elderly man escape house fire

Published: Jan. 26, 2022 at 5:37 AM AKST
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FAIR OAKS, Calif. (KCRA) - An elderly man is thanking his neighbor for saving his life.

When the man’s house caught on fire, he had no way out, until that neighbor sprang into action.

It was a scary situation Monday afternoon as a fire ripped through the garage of a Fair Oaks, California, home. Inside, just a few feet away from the flames, was 92-year-old Harold Kaler.

“I heard the crash,” Kaler said.

He was resting in his electric recliner in a room right next to the garage.

The fire caused the power to go out so Kaler could not get up.

“I was just sitting there, and I couldn’t get out of the chair,” Kaler said.

Even if he could his mobility issues presented another problem.

Kaler usually uses a ramp in the garage to leave his house, but it was completely engulfed in flames along with the rest of the garage.

“The smoke was coming through the cracks of the door,” he said.

Kaler had no way out, until a friendly face stepped in to help.

Kaler’s next-door neighbor Erik Bean said when another neighbor alerted him about the fire, he jumped into action.

“Grabbed the fire extinguisher, ran over,” Bean said.

Home surveillance video shows Bean making his way toward the house.

“I just came up the steps. Luckily the door wasn’t locked,” he said.

Once inside­, Bean noticed the door to the garage was glowing red.

“So I just came over and helped him get out of his recliner, grabbed his walker and then we proceeded out of the house,” Bean said.

This all happened before Sacramento Metro Fire arrived.

Bean is now being hailed as a hero.

“I think that’s very kind, but very overstated. It was just the right thing to do,” Bean said. “Now that I have a little time to reflect on it, I did put myself in personal harm or harm’s way, but I would do it again.”

Kaler is grateful Bean acted so quickly and beyond blessed to be alive.

“He got me out of there and got me out of the place, and I was really thankful for that,” he said.

That’s the power of neighbors helping neighbors.

Copyright 2022 KCRA via CNN Newsource. All rights reserved.