Reprinted with Permission
ATLANTA - An Atlanta firefighter is being hailed as a hero after rescuing a man and his son from a burning car Friday morning in Barrow County
Atlanta Fire and Rescue's Karen Nowakowski says she and her 12-year old son Ryan were driving to the grocery store when a three car accident happened in front of them.
Nowakowski works at Atlanta's Fire Station 4 on Edgewood Avenue in Atlanta. It's one of the city's busiest stations. She says she was going to the store to pick up supplies for the Station house.
"We do this on a daily basis," Nowakowski said about her reaction. "I work for one of the busiest companies in Atlanta, so it was just a different day at work. It just happened that today I was in civilian clothes."
Nowakowski says she was in Capri pants and flip flops when she jumped out of her car to see if anyone needed assistance. She saw a car with two men inside, one of them had his leg hanging out. That victim was in the passenger seat. She would later find out he was the father of the man who was driving.
Nowakowski says she tried to pull the passenger side door open, but it was too damaged to move. Then she noticed some flames coming up to the top of the hood.
"So I went over to the driver's side and I opened the door and helped the driver out," she said. "I took the passenger and I helped him over the center console and he was trying to help me, but he was in so much pain that he just couldn't help me much."
Nowakowski says her son Ryan stayed in her car while she made the rescue. She said he wasn't too impressed because she and his father are both firefighters.
"It just so happened that I was in capri's and flip flops, otherwise it was just another day," she said. "I'm not a hero, it's just something I do for a living."
Nowakowski says after the rescue she and her son went to the store and picked up the supplies.