Teens rush into house fire, save lives of 8 children

by: Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk Updated:

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PUYALLUP, Wash. - Three teens are being hailed as heroes, receiving an award for saving eight children who were trapped in a house fire in Puyallup, Washington.

The teens were watching their siblings and their friends when a fire broke out on April 15.

The teens were planning dinner in the kitchen, talking, while the younger children played upstairs, The News Tribune reported.

Karsyn Perez, then 13, Matthew Wood, 15 and Trinity Harrison, 15, were left in charge while their parents went to dinner.

Harrison and Perez were charging their hoverboards in another part of the house when something exploded.

They found the hoverboards burning.

When the younger kids heard what was going on, they tried to come down the stairs but Wood told them to go back, The News Tribune reported.

The teens tried to extinguish the fire with water, but when that didn't work, Wood ran up the stairs to get the youngsters out of the soon-to-be burning home.

They eventually got the children out of the house, but after a headcount, they realized one was missing, then they heard screams coming from inside the home.

Harrison and Wood took off, back inside the inferno.

They were met with fire climbing the walls, ceiling and stairs and thick black smoke, limiting visibility, The News Tribune reported.

They found the missing girl, a twin to one of the children who had already been rescued, but they couldn’t get down the stairs. Harrison threw the girl over part of the burning stairs, then had to make the jump herself. But they were safe.

Harrison realized that her dog was still trapped.

She tried to get back in, but Wood and Perez held her back.

Her dog, Sandy, and another dog died, but two other dogs and two cats survived.

Of the 11 children in the home at the time of the fire, all 11 got out safely with no injuries, The News Tribune reported.

Perez, Wood and Harrison were presented with Citizen Lifesaving Awards this week from Central Pierce Fire and Rescue, two months after the blaze.

To read more of their heroic story and how the night unfolded, click here.

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David McNew/Getty Images