Man rescues neighbor from burning house on Christmas Eve

Man rescues neighbor from burning house on Christmas Eve

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Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

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Manchester, CT — A Manchester resident was home with his family when his son alerted him to a fire next door, from there, neighbor Norman Rodriguez had little time to think as he dashed to his neighbor's house, which was engulfed in flames.

"The smoke was starting to build up on the right-hand side of the first floor in the living room and it started growing bigger and bigger," said Rodriguez.

Rodriguez's next act was nothing shy of heroic.

"I just heard this screaming in anguish and I tried to open the door and when I heard the scream again and I heard that was right there," describes Rodriguez.

"I could tell, so I decided to kick in the door to see what was going on there and I immediately saw a naked man there, so I went into the house about three feet and tried to get him out."

When Rodriguez was finally able to get the man out of the house, he said he was burned from head to toe.

Rodriguez told Eyewitness News that he considered going back in the house to make sure no one else was inside.

"My wife was in the back screaming, hysterical," Rodriguez said.

"My kids were back there and I just told him to stay back there at this point. I wasn't sure if there was somebody else inside because I thought I heard somebody else screaming."

The 22-year-old victim was taken to Hartford Hospital, then transferred by Life Star to the Bridgeport Burn Center in critical condition.

Crews are working to determine the cause of the fire.

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Rebecca Cashman
    Cheri Hardman

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