Fire crew and resident look back at Sunday apartment fire

KBTX News 3 at Ten(Recurring)
Published: Sep. 21, 2022 at 10:05 PM CDT
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) - A woman and her two young children found themselves trapped in a fire Sunday afternoon on the second floor of an apartment building.

When the call came in, first responders sprang into action. College Station Police began notifying others in the building they need to leave, including resident Adrianer Young.

“[They were] banging on the door and saying the building was on fire,” she said. “My heart started pounding really fast and then when I stepped out and actually stepped across the way and look behind the building where the fire was, I was like, ‘oh my god,’ I start praying for everyone on this backside.”

Young was just a few walls away from the fire, but luckily her apartment is not damaged. When she saw fire crews racing to the scene, all she could think about was the neighbors inside.

“That was our biggest concern, you know, was trying to make sure our residents, our neighbors were okay. You know, and we pray for them,” she said.

Once the truck firefighter Joshua Whatley arrived on the scene, they were told a rescue was required. Whatley says this was second nature for them.

“One of them was quite young. So I remember actually supporting his head and everything because it’s probably about a week old,” he said. “[The] mom literally handed them out the window because I was able to grab them, take them down, pass them off.”

The crew at Fire Station 2 on Sunday morning was a bit different than usual. It consisted of firefighters from multiple different shifts, who don’t typically work together. Capt. Joseph Gibson says he’s proud of that crew for their hard work Sunday and thankful for the recent training they all got on that exact scenario.

“We trained on just this very thing this summer and I didn’t really have to give them any instruction at all. They got the ladder and went to work,” Gibson said. “Without that [training] this would not have happened in the way that it did.”

The woman and her children were transported for care but are expected to be okay. The apartment they were living in and the one below that were a total loss.

While this can be a scary moment for victims, Gibson says he’s happy to do the job and work with so many people willing to help.

“I just want to go back and do the best I can for the city and I enjoy this job. I’ve been here for almost 27 years, and I’ll still love coming to work every day,” he said. “The people that work here, they enjoy the job, they enjoy coming to work. And it’s unfortunate that things like this happened, but they’re ready.”

Crew members also revived a cat on the scene with the help of an oxygen mask. The fire started on the first floor of the apartment, but the cause is still unknown.