Audio

Student saves man from fire

Waking up to find his bike stolen led a Charlottetown student on a route to save a life last month.
Eugene McMinns talks about running into a smoke-filled house on Fitzroy Street to save an older couple. 2:06

Waking up to find his bike stolen led a Charlottetown student on a route to save a life last month.

With his bike gone on July 23, Holland College student Eugene McMinns, a 21-year-old from the Bahamas, had no choice but to start walking to his job at a summer camp.

As he was walking down Fitzroy Street, he noticed a cat sitting in the window of a house. The cat was surrounded by thick, black smoke.

The house was on fire.

McMinns looked around for help, knocking on neighbours doors, but no one answered. Since he doesn't own a cell phone, he could not call 911 for help.

He had two choices: he could run for help or he could run in to help. He ran in.

Here is McMinns describing what came next.

McMinns still carries the scars of a previous encounter with fire. When he was four years old, he was horribly burned in a fire. He suffered third degree burns on both his legs from his thighs to his ankles.

He could not go to school for two years because of the severity of his injuries, and he was left with terrible scars and permanent nerve damage in his legs.

But even after suffering this traumatic childhood accident, he did not hesitate to run in that day and help.

With everyone safe, McMinns looked at his watch and thought, "I better be off to work, I'm late. My boss is going to kill me."

As he turned to leave, he noticed the number on the house was 242, the area code of The Bahamas.

Whenever a Bahamian person goes out into the world their friends and family say, "Represent the 242," which means, make the Bahamas proud.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.