It was the day before Thanksgiving when the Thomas family of Dallas, Texas woke up to find their apartment filled with smoke.
The apartment building where they lived at Meadows on Ferguson was on fire, and as the seconds ticked by there seemed to be no escape from the deadly blaze. With the hallway already engulfed in flames, Mom, Shuntara Thomas, says her husband punched a hole in the window of their third floor apartment and the family of three stood looking down at the hard ground beneath them, wondering if they’d survive the fall.
Below them on the ground, a stranger stood holding his arms open, urging them to jump.
The stranger was Byron Campbell. He and his friends had been passing by when they spotted the fire, and before the fire department had even arrived they had joined the police on the scene in an effort to save lives. The young men began pounding on doors and pulling mattresses outside onto the lawn, hoping to cushion the fall of anyone who was forced to jump.
Shuntara was terrified as she saw what she needed to do. Holding her one-year-old daughter on the edge of the window sill, she looked down three stories into the eyes of the man in whom she needed to place all of her trust.
Then baby Kristin plummeted from the window into the waiting arms of her hero.
“I just told the mom I wouldn’t drop the baby,” Byron explained. “Then she let go and I caught it. I held on like a football and didn’t let go.”
“It was terrifying,” said Shuntara said through her tears, “I didn’t know if I was going to come down with her or if that would be the last time that I was holding my child.”
With Kristin safe in Byron’s arms, Shuntara and her husband jumped out themselves, landing safely on the mattress that Byron and his friends had placed beneath their window. Incredibly, Shuntara and Kristin suffered only scrapes and bruises from their ordeal, while Kristin’s dad needed 22 stitches to close the cuts on his hand he’d gotten while smashing the window.
“I have my child because of him,” she said. “She gets to live another day because of him.”
Dallas police and fire department worked diligently to put out the fire and ensure everyone got out, but they agree that it was Byron and his friends who ensured that the loss of life wasn’t far greater. Shuntara is convinced that if it weren’t for Byron, she and her daughter would not have made it out.
Well done, young men! It provides us with so much comfort knowing that there are strangers out there who are willing to put themselves at risk in order to help others.
Watch the dramatic police footage below, and be sure to share to say thank you to Byron and his friends for their selfless act of heroism.
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