Whatever petty annoyances a family might experience, one thing remains constant: no matter the crisis, no matter the issue, we can always rely on family being there when we need them most.
And for one 96-year-old, that support and love was the difference between life and death.
When James Brown heard the screams of his 96-year-old aunt, he jumped to the rescue.
On the night of Friday, June 1, 14-year-old Georgetown, South Carolina, resident James Brown heard a bone-chilling scream.
It came from his great-great-great aunt, 96-year-old Pauline Caverly, who had lived next to James and his family for years.
When he went outside, he immediately understood the reason for her terror. Caverly’s home was engulfed in flames.
“It was a whole bunch of heat and smoke that just rolled into my eyes,” James told WMBF News.
But despite the chaos and danger, James only had one thing on his mind: his aunt’s safety.
James was determined to rescue her, even if it cost him his own life.
“I still ran in to try to open the door but I could not see her or anything,” James said.
Unable to see anything inside the house, James ran to the back to check whether his aunt made it out. He found her on the stairwell, nearly 8 feet from the ground.
“She told me I probably wasn’t going to be able to do anything and that I wouldn’t be able to get her over,” James said.
But, for the brave young man, abandoning her to certain death or injury wasn’t an option.
“I told her I’m the only one that can do anything right now, so that’s all that matters [and] we have to go,” James said. “I was thinking in my mind if she’s going, then I’m going too.”
James enlisted help and got to work.
Even though the fire was unlike anything he had ever seen, the danger never entered his mind.
“I didn’t really think about it to be honest,” James said. “It’s just I saw her, knew where she needed to be and it’s not in there.”
With the help of a friend, James wasted little time; he ran into the burning house intent on saving his aunt.
Before long, the two boys managed to bring her out. However, by the end of the night, she had lost everything in the fire.
“It’s very heartbreaking to come outside and just look at it, to know what it used to be like,” James said.
But possessions mean nothing in the face of James’ selfless heroism.
James only suffered minor burns and cuts from the rescue attempt. His aunt was transported to the hospital, but has reportedly recovered.
Though she lost all her possessions, it was only thanks to James that she did not lose her life, or suffer more egregious injury.
And for James, whose bravery comes from his family’s history of military service, that was all that mattered.
“We’ll get through it,” James told WMBF. “We always find a way to get through it.”
Caverly was reportedly staying with family in Surfside beach.
Watch the full video below:
A 14-year-old South Carolina boy is being called a hero after rescuing his 96-year-old great-great-great aunt from a house fire.“I told her I’m the only one that can do anything right now, so that’s all that matters (and) we have to go. I was thinking in my mind if she’s going, then I’m going too.”
Posted by FOX8 on Monday, June 4, 2018