When his home caught on fire, a Clayton County 16-year-old quickly scrambled to get three of his siblings safely out of the house.
After accomplishing that, he ran back into the burning home to save his wheelchair-bound brother, who has cerebral palsy, Channel 2 Action News reported.
Juderrius Walker’s family is hailing him as a hero after the incident Saturday night at their home in Jonesboro, Channel 2 reported. After spotting the flames, he called his mother Chrishandle Gaither, who was at work just after midnight, to say his room was on fire.
“The whole time I’m praying to myself that all the kids get out,” Gaither told the news station. “I could hear him directing my 13-year-old, telling him to go and take (two other siblings) out of the house.”
However, he couldn’t stop there. His brother, Jacari, was still inside the home trapped in his wheelchair, Channel 2 reported.
“I had to jump over the fire to get back in there,” the teenager told the news station. “I had to pull the little rest thing from his neck, and then I had to unstrap the things from his stomach, and then I got him up out of the chair.”
He was unable to save the family’s two dogs, but their pet turtles survived, Channel 2 reported. A GoFundMe page was set up to help the family replace what was lost in the fire, which includes Jacari’s wheelchair and feeding machine.
Cerebral palsy is a group of disorders that affects a person’s ability to control his or her muscles, and it’s the most common motor disability in childhood, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The symptoms vary in each case.
Clayton County fire spokeswoman Laura Richardson told AJC.com that investigators don’t suspect arson in this case, but the cause of the fire remains under investigation.
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