Twenty-four senior people, including Gordon Forthan, were asleep when a four-alarm fire ripped through the top of iHome Care & Dialysis on May 11 last year. Forthan heard pounding on his door at about 1 a.m.
“‘Hey! There’s a fire! Gotta get out of here.’ I thought I was dreaming,” Forthan remembered. Evelyn Green, Gordon’s sister, is eternally grateful to Portland fireman Richard Lyman, who saved him from the burning building that night.
“I put my arms around him and dragged him out the backside of the building, made sure he was safe,” Lyman said. “It’s just a wonderful feeling. I’m just grateful. It’s hard to describe because he’s still here with us, and it could’ve been. Everybody could’ve been gone, so I’m just grateful,” Green said.
A video shows Portland care home residents thanking first responders-
Nearly a year later, the team and the people rescued by the first responders could observe the work being made on the building that had been demolished. “The Portland Fire Department saved me!” Forthan said.
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The firefighters who responded that night claimed there were many courageous acts and that Tim Spencer was “the real hero.” He was the first to rush inside the burning building to save his coworkers at iHome Care and Dialysis.
“These residents are my family, you know, these are people I care for and stand beside every single day and oversee their care,” Spencer said, “It’s like having my mom and dad in there.” The owners have blamed an electrical fire in a vent for the $2 million in damage, but they still want to complete construction within the next three months.
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