A Hackettstown, New Jersey, police officer was recently recognized by the police department for his heroic actions in rescuing a 91-year-old woman from a house fire over the weekend.
The incident occurred on Saturday at approximately 2:27 a.m. when Officer Ryan Blankenship responded to a distress call from the Independence Township Police Department regarding a structure fire with a person trapped inside, as detailed in a post on the Hackettstown Police Department Facebook page.
Upon arriving at the scene, Officer Blankenship witnessed smoke engulfing the premises and flames consuming one side of the residence. Fortunately, a 61-year-old woman had already been safely assisted out of the house by Independence Township Police Officer Rafael Ortiz. However, her elderly mother, aged 91, remained trapped inside, officials say.
Officer Blankenship went above and beyond the call of duty, braving the flames to save the elderly woman.
After making his way through a bedroom window, he located the 91-year-old woman and lifted her off the bed.
As seen on the officer’s body-camera footage, he then carefully passed her through the window into the arms of Independence Township Fire Department Chief Clyde Snyder, who was accompanied by Independence Township Police Sergeant Scott Stocker and Officer Ortiz.
Authorities commended Officer Blankenship for his swift and decisive actions that ultimately saved the woman’s life.
“Officers never know when the next call will come or what that call will be, but they are always prepared. This video gives an insight into the officers’ courage and bravery that is displayed every single day,” the department wrote on Facebook.
Following the rescue, the elderly woman was thoroughly examined by the rescuers. No serious injuries were detected.
She was then transferred into the hands of the Independence First Aid and Rescue Squad, who continued to provide her with the necessary care and support.
“Great work by all those involved with this rescue!” the department concluded.
Hackettstown is located in Warren County, New Jersey.