Firefighter critically burned in Delaware walks out of hospital

WEST CHESTER, Pa. (WPVI) -- Firefighter Dave Smiley was in critical condition with second and third-degree burns just 15 days ago.

On Friday, he walked out of Crozer Chester Hospital.

Scores of fellow firefighters lined up outside the hospital to applaud and cheer the 23-year-old from West Chester.

On March 14th, as a volunteer with the Minquis Fire Company in Delaware, he battled a two-alarm house fire.

He fell from the second to the first floor after the fire-damaged second floor gave way under him.

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Firefighter falls through floor battling blaze in Delaware. Watch this report from Action News at 4pm on March 14, 2019.

As Smiley climbed into a fire truck that would take him to a welcome home luncheon, he indicated he has no intention of quitting firefighting.

"I'll be back probably in six months, in six to eight months," he said.

Later, at the lunch put on by the Good Will Fire Company in West Chester which Smiley joined when he was just 14, he talked about the fire in Delaware that put him in the hospital.

He said, "We were going in to do a search in the bedroom. I felt my foot go through the floor and then my whole body went through. It was as quick as that!"

Smiley said he never thought he was going to die, saying, "I knew I was going to make it out. I also knew there were going to be injuries."

Besides volunteering for fire companies in West Chester and Delaware, Smiley also works as a paid firefighter for the city of Lebanon, Pennsylvania.
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