SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) – A Springfield man is being called a hero after he saved two toddlers and two dogs from a house fire.
Dan Falconer is a maintenance man and a property manager. This past Monday will be a day on the job he will never forget.
Falconer was working on a house on Reservoir Street in Springfield when he noticed something happening at the house across the street.
“I came out, pulled in, I looked in my rearview mirror, and I [saw] a small fire on the front porch over here,” Falconer said. “And I thought, ‘Well, maybe they’re just lighting up a grill.'”
But the fire grew and flames consumed the house, turning it into a massive fireball.
“I called 911 and was talking to them when a 15-year-old came out in front of the house,” Falconer said. “And I asked her if there was anybody else in the house and she said, ‘Yes, there’s a one-year-old and a four-year-old in the back.’”
Instead of running away from the burning building or waiting for firefighters, he and a neighbor went in, breaking a window at the back of the house.
“I felt for those kids. We got to get those kids out because I’d hate to be in that situation where I lose kids because of the fire,” Falconer said. “And I was afraid the fire department wasn’t going to get here in time. That’s the reason I went ahead and went around the back and got the kids out.”
They managed to save the two toddlers along with two dogs trapped inside the house. Falconer said the family was grateful for his actions.
“She thanked me and she was getting into a panic stage about her house being on fire, and they sat there and watched the fire get put out,” Falconer said.
Many in the community are calling Falconer’s actions heroic, but he doesn’t consider himself a hero.
“I would think anybody in my situation would have done the same thing, but I didn’t even think about that,” Falconer said. “I just wanted to get those kids out.”
No one was hurt in the fire and the cause is under investigation. The Springfield Fire Department is suspecting arson.