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Off-Duty Oregon Officer Rescues Two Men From Burning Vehicle

March 31, 2014  | 

Off-duty Washington County Sheriff's corporal Cheryl Crecelius rescued two men from a burning vehicle after she arrived upon the scene Saturday night in rural Washington County near Gaston, Ore., reports The Oregonian.

Crecelius unfastened the seatbelt and pulled Jason Eaton, 25, from the front passenger seat backward through the right rear door as the Jeep filled with smoke. She placed him on the ground a safe distance from the fire that was rapidly consuming the vehicle. He was regaining consciousness as she raced to free the unconscious driver.

Crecelius unfastened driver Mark Vanbleck's seatbelt and attempted to pull him backward out of the same rear door. The fire had consumed the entire engine compartment and flames were breaching through the floorboard area as the smoke began thickening in the passenger area.

Vanbleck's legs were pinned between the dash and seat. Crecelius crawled out of the vehicle to get assistance. A man in his 20s stopped and helped by getting back into the burning vehicle with Crecelius. Together they freed Vanbleck from the vehicle moments before it was fully engulfed in flames. He remained unconscious until Gaston Fire Department personnel arrived and revived him.

Tags: Officer Heroism, Washington County (Ore.) Sheriff


Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Retired Chief @ 3/31/2014 8:52 PM

Maam you are a warrior! Great job, thanks for your service, and be safe!

Doug Hormann @ 4/1/2014 11:04 AM

I work with Cheryl and can tell you that this is typical of the dedication she brings to the job every day. Of course, now that she's famous, she's going to be totally insufferable:)

Bravo Zulu Cheryl!

Retired Chief @ 4/1/2014 12:10 PM

Hey Doug you need to do what we do over here in Eastern Oregon---since she got her name in the paper and is famous she should have to bring in desert for the whole crew :)

Bob@ Az. @ 4/1/2014 6:33 PM

Seems to me that the term "off duty" doesn't apply to LEOs or other first responders. Great job Corporal Crecelius. Blues, Stay Safe.

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