Heading into Thanksgiving, an eastern Kentucky couple is thankful for a high school quarterback who stepped in to help them escape a house fire unharmed.
“It’s very heartbreaking,” Don Ratliff told WSAZ of a fire that destroyed the home he and his wife lived in for 43 years.
His wife’s caregiver alerted him to a fire on the couple’s screened-in porch Friday morning. Ratliff tried to put the fire out, to no avail.
“I grabbed a fire extinguisher, and I went out there and started battling the flames, which were about waist high, and I was making no progress,” he said.
Ratliff said the flames spread quickly and reached the ceiling.
Raceland High School junior quarterback Logan Lundy lives in the same neighborhood and was on his way back home from school to retrieve his Chromebook when he saw the home burning.
Logan rushed to help Jenny Ratliff, who has been battling an illness, get seated safely in a van and out of the cold and backed a car out of the garage before flames reached could reach the vehicle.
“I just did what anybody would do and helped them out,” Logan said. “If somebody needs help, anybody is going to go try to lend a hand.”
Don Ratliff said he’s grateful the young student-athlete was so quick to help in a tough, dangerous spot.
“He didn’t even hesitate,” he said. “When he saw the caregiver was struggling to get Jenny out onto the sidewalk, he just came running. It’s heartwarming to see that nowadays.”
“It was pretty scary,” Logan added.
The Ratliffs’ neighbors are pitching in to help replace items the couple lost in the fire.
Only hours after assisting the Ratliffs, Lundy quarterbacked Raceland to a 17-14 win over Hazard in the quarterfinal round of the KHSAA 1A state football championship. Raceland, 12-1, takes on (Louisville) Holy Cross on Friday for the right to advance to the 1A title game.
Lundy, who recently won the Eastern Kentucky Conference Offensive Player of the Year award, has averaged 159 yards passing per game this season while tossing 32 touchdowns. He has rushed for 324 yards and six touchdowns.
Raceland is a city of about 2,500 residents in Greenup County.
(Headline photo: Logan Lundy with his Eastern Kentucky Offensive Player of the Year award, courtesy of Lundy’s Twitter account)
By Gray Media and Ken Howlett, News Director