Chemainus man saves neighbour

Bailey Misiurka ran to the aid of his neighbours after their Chemainus Road house caught fire

A Chemainus man is being credited with saving the life of a neighbour during a house fire last Sunday morning.

Bailey Misiurka ran to the aid of his neighbours after their Chemainus Road house caught fire, and managed to pull one man through a window to safety.

“I was actually lying in bed when I heard someone screaming,” Misiurka recalled. “I jumped out of bed. There are a lot of hay fields around here, and when I saw the smoke, I though the hay field was on fire.”

When they realized where the smoke was coming from, Misiurka and another neighbour ran to the scene. Initially they believed a tree was on fire, but they soon figured out that it was actually a house, which was quickly succumbing to the flames. The first person they encountered was a woman who lived in the house.

“It looked like she had a little bit of singed hair,” Misiurka said. “We thought she was the only one there, but then she said her husband was still inside.”

Misiurka used to have friends living in the house, he explained, so he was familiar with the layout. He ran to a door that went into an enclosed space below the deck and was able to break through that one. While he could see the man inside through another door, staggering around, he couldn’t manage to get through it, so he kicked out the window and pulled the man, who he believes was suffering from smoke inhalation, to safety.

“The deck above me was burning,” Misiurka said. “But I got him out.”

Once the couple was out, Misiurka left the yard to make room for the Chemainus Volunteer Fire Department. He said he has no idea how the fire started.

Misiurka said adrenaline took over and he didn’t hesitate to do what he could to get the man out.

“I just ran up and went into the building,” he said. “It was just go, go, go. I didn’t even hesitate to go in the back door.”

This wasn’t the first time Misiurka has helped rescue someone. A year ago, a friend was involved in a car accident on Henry Road, and he was one of three or four guys who helped pull him from the wreckage.

Kevin Rothbauer FOR the chronicle