Catherine Ritchie had lived in the same house in Sapulpa Oklahoma for 58 years until she had to leave it after a conflagration consumed her abode in flames.
It was an ordinary evening for Catherine. She was preparing for bedtime when she found out that her bed was burning. The Sapulpa resident tried to put out the fire but failed to extinguish it completely.
“I was getting ready for bed in the bathroom, and I turned around, and my bed, the head of my bed, was covered in flames,” Catherine said in an interview.
The fire continued to raze on, producing thick clouds of smoke, making Catherine feeling disoriented. With the smoke blocking her view, she searched for her bedroom door to find her way out. Instead, she opened her closet door. In an attempt to seek help, the 90-year old pushed the emergency button she was wearing to signal that she was in an emergency while the fire destroyed her bedroom.
It was a life-and-death situation for Catherine. Outside, four teenage boys Dylan Wick, Nick Byrd, Seth Byrd, and Wyatt Hall, noticed the burning home and immediately took action to save her.
“One started breaking the glass on the front door. One called 911. One went to the back door and began kicking it in. One went to the neighbors for an ax and help,” Catherine’s daughter, Missy Nicholas, narrated in a blog post.
The boys shared that they were about to leave and go to a nearby shop when they smelled something burning.
“It smelled kind of like burning rubber. Then, we heard the house alarm go off,” then 16-year old Dylan Wick shared.
Among the boys, Nick Byrd, who was 14 that time, managed to get in the house and found the old lady in the hallway. He carried Catherine out of the house to safety. The three boys also managed to leave the burning house unharmed. It took a few moments for the firefighters to be in the incident to save whatever remained in Catherine’s home, where she lived for 58 years.
It was indeed Catherine’s lucky day. She got out of her burning house safe and unharmed. Without the boys’ heroic act, Catherine couldn’t have made it safe and alive.
Their bravery did not go unnoticed. Catherine’s daughter Missy thanked the young heroes for their admirable act of courage in saving her mother. Netizens praised the boys, celebrated their heroism, and made their story viral.