Good Samaritan recounts helping neighbor escape flames from Monroe home

Fire Chief Wayne Lyons says a passerby noticed the flames coming out of the front window and got out of his car to help assist the woman out of the burning house.

Naomi Yané

Mar 21, 2024, 4:10 PM

Updated 31 days ago


Thomas Gallino is a good Samaritan who helped his elderly neighbor escape the flames in her home early Thursday morning at Rossmoor Village in Monroe - and he spoke exclusively to News 12 New Jersey.
"I ran to the front door, banged on the door, rang the doorbell and yelled if anyone's in there, cause there's a fire outside you have to come out of the house," he said. "I banged it several times luckily for me the lady answered the door on the opposite side, so she was up and she opens the door and she had a walker and I told her we have to get out because there's a fire."
Tom was on his way to his job at Loewe's where he's a merchandise service tech. He said he drives this route every day, leaving the apartment complex. He was - luckily - a few minutes behind schedule on Thursday.
"I seen the flames coming out of the lower window and actually touching the roof and I tried to go in the place and the smoke was too heavily inundated I just couldn't go in the house," he said.
Gallino says a second good Samaritan pulled up to the scene and offered an assist in getting the woman to safety.
"We put some blankets on her, we took her away from the house and the gentleman put her in his car waiting for the police and fire department to come," he says.
Gallino has lived there for four years and says he's never experienced anything like that and he was nervous but he was glad to lend a helping hand
"Everybody has to help one another here one way or another," he says.

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