A West Philadelphia man tried to save his mother from a blazing fire last Thursday by scaling a 19-story building to come to her rescue.
Jermaine, who didn’t give his last name, received a call from his sister saying that his mother, a 65-year-old woman named Sheila who is bed-bound, was trapped in her 15th floor apartment he rushed over to her home. He said the doors were blocked by police and they wouldn’t let him in the building so he was left with only one option.
“They said the elevators are not working. I said, ‘No problem. I’ll take the steps,” Jermaine told ABC’s Philly affiliate WPVI. “I just want to make sure my mother- my mother is sick, she’s bed-ridden. So I need to get up there. They were like ‘we can’t let you in.’ I took it upon myself because that’s my mother. There’s no limits. That’s my mother.”
Jermaine, who had cracked his ribs earlier that day, didn’t hesitate to take the climb. The 35-year-old is a construction worker and roofer, so when it came to scaling the building he was fearless.
“When I grabbed a gate, at the top of the gate, there was a ledge. Then I could step on top of the ledge and reach up to the other gate, and keep climbing my way up,” Jermaine said.
After he climbed to the 15th floor of the Westpark Apartments, he said his mother was surprised to see him coming to save her.
“She was more shocked. She’s not surprised by the things that I do for her. She knows I’ll go over and beyond for her.”
Thankfully, the fire was contained and his mother was unharmed so he climbed back down to the building, Jermaine not only risked his own life but he also could have been arrested.
“He told me if I didn’t leave I was going straight to jail. Because that was his job. But, he actually did cut me a break. He understood the circumstances, he knew – when your adrenaline is pumping, and your mom is up there, you thinking she’s dying – you’d do anything you can.”
His mother did make it out of the building safe.