A split second decision is all it takes to separate life from death, and it all came down to one star sportsman’s honed reflexes. In a startling video that was circulated over social media, former American football player (that’s American football, not our football) Philip Blanks managed to save the life of a three-year-old toddler after he was flung out of a burning building by his mother.
The incident was reported to have taken place at an apartment complex in Phoenix, Arizona. Philip, who is both an ex-football player in high school and also a retired former marine, had initially intended to meet his friends for an early morning workout when a fire broke.
Rushing to the scene in the nick of time, he was seen on video catching hold of a three-year-old toddler who was flung out of a third-floor balcony by his mother, who had hoped to save him from the inferno.
“People were screaming ‘there are kids up there’ and to throw the kids down,” he said.
Philip managed to bring the boy, who has been identified as the son of 30-year-old Rachel Long, to safety away from the scathing flames. Rachel’s family reported that she perished after heading back into the flames to save her 8-year-old daughter, Roxxie, despite having caught fire herself.
Roxxie was also saved by another good Samaritan, 42-year-old D’Artagan Alexander, after he rushed into the burning building to rescue the young girl, reports My San Antonio. Both of Rachel’s children survived the incident, but she never emerged from the fire alive.
“She had the strength and the courage to get them outside – that’s powerful,” Blanks told Arizona’s Family in an interview.
“To be in that type of situation and still care about life, not yours, that’s very strong of her. She’s a warrior.”
The video of the boy’s rescue has since gone viral over social media.
We hope that Rachel will be able to rest in peace, and we extend our deepest condolences to her family during this trying time.
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