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Cop save Sarah's life at risk of his own
James J Alonzo
Disabledveteran Viet Nam
|AUTHOR'S OTHER TITLES (12)
A Missed Love (Short Stories) A missed love that occurred during the Viet Nam War [2,782 words] [Drama]
A Son Is Born (Agent Orange) (Short Stories) Son is born with physical problems from father's exposure to agent orange [2,475 words] [Health]
An Attempted Mugging Of An Old Man (Short Stories) Old war vet faces a young mugger [845 words] [Crime]
Edna Benz Store Detective (Short Stories) Elderly woman tough as nails [871 words] [Humor]
Ghosts Of Viet Nam (Short Stories) Ghosts in viet nam [925 words] [Mind]
I Was Told I Was Wrong To Go To Viet Nam (Short Stories) Soldier arrives home and is told his war service was wrong [853 words] [Relationships]
Mr. Whiskey Viet Nam (Short Stories) Soldier has a imaginary friend [1,223 words] [History]
Nurses In Viet Nam, They Served Too (Short Stories) Nurses served in viet nam and deserve respect [800 words] [History]
Seeing Eye What??? (Short Stories) Blind Nan stop by the cops for driving blind [1,096 words] [Humor]
The Viet Nam Experience (Short Stories) Trying to understand PTSD from War [800 words] [Health]
When One Becomes Aware Of Their Mortality (Short Stories) When ne becomes aware of their mortality [606 words] [Health]
Woman Attempts Suicide (Short Stories) Woman attempts suicide and runs into a cop who try but looses his patience [1,043 words] [Humor]
James J Alonzo
(C) James J Alonzo
Jack rubbed his eyes which stung from prolonged exposure to heat and smoke. His face was black and gray with soot and sweat and blood, which had formed deep lines into his furrowed brow, a running down his grey police uniform. His exposed forearms had first and second degree burns.
Jack shook his head trying to get some of the debris and dust from the fire out of his hair. As he sat at the side of his patrol vehicle, he slowly ran his fingers through his blonde hair, and noticed some of his hair was burned. He was weary, breathless, having difficulty to get air into his lungs. But happy because, although the fire department couldn't save the apartment building, he had at least saved little Sarah Smith.
Sarah was a small blond child who had lived in the Derby Apartments building. Before the fire had started she had been playing in the basement next to the common use laundry room. It was her secret place to have her dolls tea party, while her mother watched the television, eating chips and dip, not even noticing that Sarah was missing.
The fire was caused by unfortunate circumstances, as most fires are. The landlord's low priced plumber had come to fix a gas leak in the building the day before and hadn't been careful. Now a small amount of gas was leaking out into the sub-basement and building up where people were unlikely to notice it until it was a real problem.
But no one ever did notice it, as Ken Blachura wandered past the building, in his new Air Jordans and newly ironed shirt. He was on his way to a hot date and he flicked his cigarette to the side of the apartment complex. The cigarette had gone straight through an old ventilation point that had no cover and ended up with the gas. What happened next is history now.
Ken carried on to his date unaware that he had had anything to do with the large explosion and fire that followed on behind him.
Flames tore through the building and the smoke rose, but also lingered on a lower level where Sarah was hiding under a table with her dolls. She watched as her childrens tea set began to become stained with the blackening air and tried to wipe a cup with the bottom of her sweatshirt.
Sarah's mother was frantic and screaming by the time that Jack had arrived with police siren and lights. She had to be carried out of the place as she wailed about Sarah. Jack had bravely dashed into the blazing building fearlessly, after hearing about Sarah. He had reacted this way on many occasions before and each time, as his adrenalin pumped around his body, he had forgotten about his own safety and had achieved tunnel vision to accomplish his mission of helping others.
This time was no exception, although he didn't know where to start. The apartment where her mother had come out of was empty of people, but Jack re-checked anyway. The sitting room curtains were on fire and the heat burnt Jacks face as he struggled forward to check in cupboards and behind doors, under beds, common places for children to hide from fires.
Using his 6'2", 290 lb muscular frame, Jack would kick doors in, as he ran in and out of the apartments, calling her name and battling with the heat and smoke which made it hard to see.
Eventually he came to the basement laundry room which was already almost a burnt out shell. But Jack hadn't given up and had discovered a little side room where, miraculously, Sarah was still alive although she had passed out.
He had cradled her in his strong arms and fought his way to try and get out of the building. He had a close shave as a support beam had fallen onto him, striking his head and shoulder. But somehow he had lifted it right off of himself, checked Sarah and then he carried Sarah out of the building.
The scene that had greeted him outside was chaos as people rushed to and fro and ambulances screamed out their sirens to move site seeing crowds, so that they could get through. Jack had put Sarah in the arms of a para medic while other people who were waiting to be seen by the paramedics and had tugged on the para mecic's sleeve and demanded,
He had then turned his back on all of the noise and sought somewhere where he could sit, and try to catch his breath. When he got to his patrol vehicle that was away from the action, he stood there, leaned his back against the side and collapsed to a sitting position, trying to breath and clear his lungs of the choking toxic smoke he had inhaled.
He glanced back at the building, black and crumbling on the skyline and suddenly realized that everyone else had disappeared. There was a smoky fog like mist, and there was now a calm quiet about the place. Nothing stirred, no breeze, no longer loud noise.
Jack then noticed clearly piercing the mist, a light spiraling down from the sky. What was this? An explosion of some sort, thought Jack in his confusion. Then out of the light stepped his deceased favorite Uncle, whom he hadn't seen since childhood, when they used to go fishing. He assured Jack that all was fine and gently smiled at him, taking his hand and leading him into the light.
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© 2000 James J Alonzo
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