Tulsa Home Health Worker Recognized For Saving Patient During Fire

Friday, June 20th 2014, 5:56 pm
By: Craig Day

A home health worker is getting some well-deserved recognition for her quick thinking during a recent apartment fire.

She calmly got a man she cares for down from the eighth floor to safety.

He says she's a hero.

Just after 10 p.m. on Monday, 75-year-old Wayne Deatherage thought a fire at the Mansion House Apartments on South Carson was probably a false alarm.

But he quickly learned it wasn't.

"I looked out and she was telling me we need to go," resident Wayne Deatherage said. "She could smell smoke."

Deatherage is speaking about Cynthia Stewart, a home health care worker with a company called Right at Home, who he had only known for two hours, when she evacuated him to safety.

"I already had him up and starting getting dressed even before our floor alarm went off, just because I saw the response outside," Stewart said.

Stewart's company honored her for getting Deatherage from his eighth-floor apartment to safety.

Heavy smoke filled two stairwells in the 11-story building, so Stewart found a third.

"I didn't give him a choice, I was leaving," Stewart said. "Wasn't leaving him behind so he had to come with me."

Stewart, who worked three years as a 911 dispatcher, kept calm.

"His healthcare worker getting him down the stairs safely that night is a great relief," Detherage's daughter Janet Karleskint said.

"I'm very grateful to her," Detherage said. "With all the ladies that come out, I'm just amazed."

The fire was contained to a second-floor apartment.

And no one was seriously injured.

"When nobody is significantly hurt, you really can't say it went any better," Stewart said.

It's a job well-done in the eyes of family members.

"An excellent job, I'm just thrilled," daughter Stephanie Detherage said.

Firefighters say the fire was caused by a burning cigarette.

They also say Mansion House did a very good job in evacuating residents from the apartment building.