Tequesta teen helps woman with pet in burning home before fire rescue arrives

Posted at 5:11 PM, Aug 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-18 04:16:23-04

A teenager's passion led him to help a woman worried about one of her pets still inside her burning home.

Nicholas Swan, 18, was driving on Riverside Drive when he noticed smoke coming from the back of a home.

"Everyone is saying you know you’re a hero, you’re a hero, I think it's just, I'm not hero, it’s a case of being at the right place at the right time," said Swan.

He called 911 and a dispatcher told him a woman called from inside the home.

"She was actually on the ground. She was nervous, she was in a panic. She was actually balled up, so I then helped her out," added Swan.

The teen is no stranger to fire rescue missions. He's been with the Palm Beach Gardens Fire Rescue Explorer program for four years. He's run calls with firefighters in the department, including his own father.


"When I opened the front door I knew that I only had a certain amount of time considering how much smoke was coming out of the back of the house," said Swan.

The woman and her two dogs were safe. He wanted to help her find her third dog Jimminy, a rescue dog that is disabled, born with his back legs inverted.

"The heat level in the house started to rise and I went outside to get a breather," he said.

Tequested Fire Rescue arrived. Firefighters were able to find and rescue the dog. The fire was put out without causing major damage to the home. The victim is thankful for Nick's willingness to help.

The victim and her pets are okay and are back in their home.

The teen talked with battalion chief and then went home to get ready for work, boxing up pizzas to go at Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza in Palm Beach Gardens. No one would ever know just hours before he bravely walked into a burning home.

Swan also just started EMT school on Tuesday. He goes back tomorrow. He says once he finishes the program, he plans to go to fire school.