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Tyler Doohan: 8-year-old saves 6, runs back into fire, dies with disabled uncle

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Tyler Doohan, the heroic eight-year-old boy who saved six relatives from a trailer fire, died when he ran back into the fire to save his grandpa and his disabled uncle. Tyler Doohan was killed in the fire when he tried to help his disabled uncle, who used a wheelchair and crutches because he was without part of a leg, reported the Democrat & Chronicle on Jan. 20, 2014.

“Firefighters say Tyler, an 8-year-old who seemingly spent much of his young life in different homes and school districts, was killed along with his grandfather, Louis J. Beach, 57, and Steven D. Smith, 54, in a fire that appears to have been caused by an electrical problem at the front of the trailer.”

Tyler Doohan’s body was found by firefighters in a rear bedroom of the trailer, only a few feet away from the bed in which his disabled Uncle Steve had died.

Since Tyler Doohan was off from school for Martin Luther King Day, the eight-year-old boy had asked his mom if he could stay with his grandfather and his relatives in a trailer at the East Avenue Manufactured Home Community off Route 441 in Penfield, N.Y.

“It was a place Tyler knew well. He stayed there frequently, playing with other kids in the neighborhood and having barbecues and bonfires with his family in the summer.”

Around 4:45 a.m. on Monday, an electrical fire started in the trailer where nine people were sleeping. Tyler Doohan, who noticed that the fire was quickly spreading, helped six people, including his grandmother, aunt, cousins, and a four-year-old and a six-year-old child, to get out of the trailer.

Realizing that his grandpa and his uncle were not able to escape the fire without help, the eight-year-old boy ran back into the fire.

According to Penfield Fire Chief Chris Ebmeyer, “the casualties of the fire could have been much worse if not for Tyler's actions, given the fact that so many people were staying in the home.”

Tyler Doohan was enrolled as a fourth-grader in the East Rochester Central School District where officials on Monday called him a "hero."

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