7-year-old boy saves family after home goes up in flames in Delaware

BEAR, Delaware (WPVI) -- A young boy is being credited with saving his family after a home went up in flames due to a pellet stove malfunction in Delaware on Thursday.

"I was upstairs with my baby cousin," said 7-year-old Yanique Rainford Jr. recalling the scary moments after a fire broke out inside his grandfather's home on the 200 block of Rice Drive in Bear.

Yanique was in the house with his 2-year-old cousin Liam Rainford and his 92-year-old great-grandmother Rosamond Rainford.

"And then I came downstairs to get water and then I saw a fire," Yanique said.

Yanique says he ran upstairs to get his baby cousin out of the house and ran back in for his great-grandmother.

"I told my grandma to come, but she was trying to put the fire out," Yanique said.

Yanique then did a remarkable thing for a 7-year-old. He picked up the phone and called 911.

"I told them, 'This is Yanique Rainford, 204 Rice Drive,can you please come?'" the boy said.

Firefighters arrived just in time to pull the great-grandmother out of the house who had fallen unconscious near the door. She was taken to Jefferson University Hospital for treatment.

Authorities deemed the fire which started on the back porch accidental, saying it was caused by a malfunction of a pellet stove in the rear of the home.

But everyone was amazed by the 7-year-old, calling him a hero for having the instincts to call 911.

"I read from this book from my school. It tells you everything you need to do - you have to call 911 for a fire," said Yanique.


His family is thankful of the young boy's heroic actions.

"I'm a proud man. He did a wonderful job," Yanique Rainford Sr., the boy's father, said. "I'm glad he thought to call 911 and just didn't get shocked and scared and stay in there."

"He saved the day and this could have been at night, it could have been way worse than this. I'm truly grateful," said the boy's grandfather, Don Rainford.

The great-grandmother who suffered burns to her face, arm and back is at Jefferson. Family members said she is in stable condition.
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