Hazelwood police officer recounts rescue of toddler, grandmother from house fire

HAZELWOOD, Mo. - A Hazelwood police officer is hailed as a hero after rescuing a toddler and her grandmother from a house fire.

Last Friday morning, Officer Daniel Rodriguez was on patrol when a call came for a house one block over on Becker Drive.

“The initial call was for a house fire. I know on the radio they said the house is fully engulfed,” he said.

The dramatic moments were caught on his body camera. The one-story brick home was, as described to Rodriguez, "engulfed in flames," and cries could be heard from the inside.

“I didn’t think there was anybody in the house and then I heard the yells,” Rodriguez said.

The child and grandmother were trapped in the basement.

“First I could hear the little girl. And then I could hear the grandmother. She was just yelling, ‘Help, help,’” he said.

Officer Rodriguez kicked open the basement window and pulled out the child.

The body camera footage shows him carrying the girl to a neighbor. He then ran right back and, with the assistance of another neighbor, helped the grandmother through the basement window.

It happened in less than two minutes, he said.

The home is a total loss but the two lives were saved, thanks to Officer Rodriguez.

“I’ve been told by a lot of people just do what you think is right. And that’s what I was just doing in the moment. And it worked out,” he said. “I think people would be surprised, the different calls that we have every day that are on this level. Luckily, I was able to just be part of a good story and get the recognition for it.”

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