FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP - A woman and her elderly mother rescued from a fire Thursday night were overjoyed when they were able to meet the police officers who saved their lives.

Maria Ducos and her mother Maria Santiago were awoken by the family dogs Thursday night with their home filled with smoke and fire.

The fire on Spruce Street was started by an unattended candle. Five Franklin Township police officers were the first to arrive on scene.

Ducos was able to get out of the house, but her mother was not.

“We heard her screaming,” says Patrolman Nicholas Gambino, “We were going to do everything we could to get her out of the house.”

The officers went in and were able to get Santiago out.

“The police officers saved my life,” says Santiago.

Neither Ducos nor Santiago were seriously injured. The family has been living in the home for more than 45 years.