Neighbor Pulls Man From Burning Muskogee Home
MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma - A Muskogee man is being credited with saving one man from a burning home and trying to save another.
Eric Coleman said he sprang into action after he ran outside and saw his neighbor's house in flames.
"I heard what seemed like a couple of light booms, and after that, a guy screaming," said Coleman.
He said when he and his daughters ran down the street to see what was going on, the house was on fire and a man was trying to get out the front door.
"He had his face pressed up against the metal frames of the door trying to breathe," said Coleman.
He said the door wouldn't budge so he broke out a window instead.
"The guy stuck his head out and I grabbed him and pulled him out," said Coleman.
The man told him an older man was still inside and Coleman, a former national guardsman, was ready to brave the flames.
"If it wasn't for my daughters literally grabbing hold of me and pulling me out, I might've been in there with him," said Coleman.
"We weren't gonna lose our dad," said Erica Coleman.
His daughter said they physically dragged their dad across the street, refusing to let him go inside.
"I didn't want to risk it. I love him, so I didn't want to risk it," Erica said.
Coleman said he didn't know victim Gary Lemoine well. He said Lemoine was a former gym teacher at a Muskogee school and said there had been issues at the home in the past but regardless it was a bad day for the whole neighborhood.
"I don't know everything that happened in this house like I said there was problems and stuff in the past," said Erica."It's tragic he had to pass this way."
Police said the cause of the fire is still under investigation.