Jusino (left) and Bishop (Navy)
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Need proof that every sailor is a firefighter?
Two aviation boatswain’s mates (aircraft handling) assigned to the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln rescued an elderly woman from a burning building July 1 in Newport News, Virginia, after seeing smoke down the street from the restaurant where they were finishing lunch.
ABH2 Devon Bishop and ABH3 Jessica Jusino had both finished general shipboard firefighting training at Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia’s Firefighting Training School in early June, according to a Navy news release announcing the rescue. They drove toward the plume and found a crowd assembled in front of a private home, watching smoke billow from an enclosed porch.
Members of the crowd told the sailors that an elderly woman was inside. The sailors split up to find a way into the home, all the while “knocking everywhere to see if someone would respond,” Jusino said in the release.
Jusino recalled hearing a scream. Bishop attempted to kick through a wooden door to the kitchen that ended up being bolted shut and blocked by a freezer. After finally forcing their way inside, the sailors were greeted by the hysterical resident, who thought they were burglars.
“After we told her that her house was on fire and that we were there to help, we helped her out of the house through the back door,” Bishop said in the release. “She was trying to grab some items, but we told her, ‘We need to get you out now.’ ”
The sailors ushered the woman to a neighbor’s house. The woman’s daughter arrived soon after, coming back from work after hearing reports of the fire.
“The lady was scared, and really didn’t know what was going on, but she was thanking us over and over again,” Jusino said in the release. “We, on the other hand, were still on an adrenaline rush.”
So much so, in fact, that when the sailors went to leave, they realized they’d left their vehicle’s engine running and doors open.
“It’s stuff you always hear about, but never really imagine yourself in that situation,” Bishop said in the release. “Everything we’ve learned ... came into play today, with no hesitation.”
Lincoln is undergoing a midlife refueling and overhaul in Newport News, which began in March 2013 and is expected to last 3½ years.