Off-Duty Indianapolis Firefighter Heroically Rescues Woman on Way Home from Grocery Store


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Greenwood, IN – A routine trip from the grocery store turned into a heroic rescue for Captain Mark Baranko of the Indianapolis Fire Department (IFD) when he saved an unconscious woman from a burning house in Greenwood, Indiana, Tuesday morning. 

According to Indianapolis Fire officials the off-duty 15-year veteran captain of the IFD was drawn to the scene by police activity and flames emanating from a two-story house in the Carefree Subdivision just before 8:30 AM.

The IFD reports that upon learning a woman was trapped inside, Baranko did not hesitate. He entered the smoke-engulfed home, navigating through heavy toxic smoke that reduced visibility to mere inches upstairs, to locate and rescue the woman found unconscious in a rear bedroom. Baranko’s quick action and disregard for his own safety ensured the woman was safely removed from the premises and received immediate medical attention.

IFD Chief Ernest Malone states, “I am proud of the heroic efforts by Captain Baranko this morning.  It is not every day that you are faced with a choice to risk your own life to save another and when faced with that choice today, Captain Baranko willingly took the risk.  Mark is a consummate professional who excels in his duties as  an officer, a leader and instructor.  We are proud to have him as a member of our firefighting family.  Our thoughts are with all those affected by today’s fire and hope that the woman makes a full recovery.”  


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