North Metro Fire Rescue District's Station 63 A-Shift was awarded the International Association of Fire Chiefs' Benjamin Franklin Fire Service Award.
The crew rushed into a Northglenn home on Feb. 23 to save the lives of 18-month-old Cody and then-5-year-old Kaitlyn Johnson.
Police say the kids' father locked them inside their home and set it on fire, after severely beating his estranged wife, Rosie Jungst.
Battalion Chief Timothy Hanlon, Lieutenant John Maes, Firefighters Josh Hamilton, Josh Deuto, John Brereton and Mark Maxwell of the North Metro Fire Rescue District received a standing ovation from fire crews around the world at the Hyatt Regency in Downtown Denver Friday. The award they received is the association's highest honor.
The crew rescued Cody and his father in thick smoke and fire, and then found Kaitlyn on the second floor of the home with burns over 60 percent of her body. Cody has fully recovered. Kaitlyn is back home and recovering from her burns. Their father passed away from his injuries in April.
"You had two kids who were literally - within seconds - within seconds, of losing their life," North Metro Fire Chief Joseph Bruce said. "We have a motto within our department, excellence within each individual act. And that night, that's what happened."
"You don't do this job for accolades, and when you get one, it's like 'Yeah, we're still just doing our job,'" North Metro Battalion Chief Tim Hanlon said. "That's really how we feel. So getting an award is like, 'Oh, my God, I can't believe you award me for doing what I love doing.'"
"Kaitlyn, Cody and I are all forever in the debt of the North Metro firefighters that saved Kaitlyn and Cody on the night of Feb. 23," their mom, Rosie Jungst, said. "The firefighters would describe what they do as just part of the job, but to us they are all superheroes and this should remind all of us just how much they do daily for each and every one of us. As always we love and thank you guys."
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