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ODOC employees rescue woman and her dog from burning home

Monday, July 29, 2019

MCALESTER, Okla. -- Sgt. Shawn Painter and Sgt. Willis Pettit wear many hats working at Oklahoma State Penitentiary – but never a fire helmet, until now. 

Around 6:30, Monday morning, dark smoke began billowing from just outside the barbed wire of OSP. Sgt. Painter said, “You see that, and he said yes. Let’s go check that out. It looks like a fire.” 

They raced toward the smoke to find this wood frame home engulfed. Sgt. Pettit said, “It looked like it originated from the outside and was eating into the house."

They ran to the door, knocked, then went inside. There was a woman, asleep an d unaware of the impending danger. According to Painter, “When I said there’s a fire she said oh no! A little shock to her. Her main concern was the dog.” 

Pettit and Painter navigated through the smoke, and escorted the woman and her dog to safety. Sgt. Painter said they got them both out safely -- just in time. “A few more minutes and it would have been a different story for her and us.” 

Don’t call these men heroes. Their job with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections is to serve the public. Occasionally, that means wearing an unfamiliar hat. 

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