Several people rushed to save residents from apartment fire

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Investigators are trying to piece together how a fire tore through a Midvale apartment complex yesterday. No one was injured in the fire, but it forced dozens from their homes. When you see the damage the fire left, it's pretty remarkable that anyone would run toward the fire to help instead of running away, but several people stepped up to help others get out safely.

Jamie Kilgore lives in the apartment complex next to the one that burned, but you can see from her home video that she was close enough to feel the heat from the huge flames. "So I took off running, and I came out here and jumped over that fence, and I tried to help people get out. I knocked on windows, trying to get this lady out," she said.

Since it was early on Saturday morning, some people were still sleeping. Another neighbor, Andrew Kelsey, woke up just in time to get his sister out, then he helped others. He said, "I don't know, just worried about the other people's safety, thought it was a good idea."

The first person to see the fire was a maintenance worker. Anthony Vigil was getting a tool from his car when he heard an explosion. He said, "I called 911, asked people to knock on the doors, please help me out. And I stayed on the phone with dispatch for a while."

Vigil shut off the gas and got people out. Many others had the same idea. Resident Alan Cook said, "Bless their hearts, these teenage boys who were running to every apartment, and not just banging on the doors, but going back repeatedly. They are heroes."

We tried to find those two teens who helped out yesterday, but no one knows who they were. Vigil says it wasn't any one person's heroics; it was everybody pulling together.

Kilgore said, "It wasn't just me, one person. It was everybody, kids, adults here. Knocking on doors, getting them out of here. I honestly would hope that anybody would do something like that."

The Midvale Fire Battalion Chief says they are finishing up interviews and will release the cause of the fire tomorrow. The apartment manager says damage will be over $200,000.

E-mail: ngonzales


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