An officer with the Southold (NY) Police Department is being lauded for his quick thinking and rapid action that helped two people survive a raging house fire in early September.

According to, Southold Fire Department Chief Craig Goldsmith sent a letter to Southold Police Chief Martin Flatley and Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell, commending Southold Town Police Officer Peter Onufrak.

The letter was read at a recent meeting of the Town Council. In it, Goldsmith wrote that "the outcome could have been much worse if not for the heroic actions of one of your officers, Officer Peter Onufrak."

Goldsmith wrote further, "Onufrak keenly noticed a brighter than normal glow coming from a house on Hortons Lane. He immediately circled back around to investigate, whereupon he first discovered the fire. With no regard for his personal safety, Officer Onufrak directly made entrance through the rear of the burning building to search for occupants. Officer Onufrak quickly discovered two people in the house who were unaware that the entire front of their house was engulfed in flames."

Goldsmith added, "His astute observation, accompanied by his bravery and quick actions, directly contributed to the saving of two lives. Officer Onufrak should be commended for his outstanding performance of duty, going above and beyond to save lives, and bringing great credit to the Southold Town Police Department and the entire community."