A Waterville man is being hailed as a hero after he saved three children and a dog from the burning apartment house they shared.

Waterville Fire Department officials credited Aaron Brunelle with saving the kids and dog in a post on the department's Facebook page. Crews were called to 13 Morrill Avenue for a three story apartment house that was heavily involved with fire. High winds contributed to the fire spreading quickly and mutual aid was called in from several surrounding towns.

When firefighters arrived, they learned that everyone had made it out safely, thanks, in part, to the efforts of Brunelle. Aaron lived on the first floor of the building and, when he discovered the fire, went upstairs to notify the other tenants. When he reached the third floor apartment, he realized that there were children inside, found them and the dog, and guided them safely down a long staircase.  If not for his efforts, fire officials say the outcome could have been far worse. The children's parents were at a nearby grocery store when the fire broke out.

Fire Chief Shawn Esler plans to recommend to the City Manager that Brunelle be recognized by the City and Fire Department with a life saving award, for his courage and quick thinking that likely saved the children's lives.


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