Police Officer Helps Man Escape House Fire Friday Morning

Friday, February 7, 2014
Engine 4 sits in front of the house where the fire occurred. The fire damage was limited to the kitchen area.
Engine 4 sits in front of the house where the fire occurred. The fire damage was limited to the kitchen area.
- photo by Bruce Garner

No injuries were reported in connection with a house fire Friday morning, thanks in part to the quick actions of a Chattanooga police officer and a good Samaritan. 

When someone called 911 Communications at 9:06 a.m. to report a house fire at 2902 North Chamberlain Ave., Chattanooga firefighters and police officers responded. CPD Patrol Officer Tyrone Williams was the first on the scene. Officer Williams said an unidentified woman was on the front porch when he arrived and she informed him that a man was still inside the house.

Officer Williams said he went inside and saw a man in a wheelchair in the front living room. He could also see flames in the kitchen and thick, black smoke was quickly filling the house. Officer Williams said the man in the wheelchair, Denver Joe McMath, did not want to leave the house without his crutches, but the officer insisted. As he pushed the wheelchair to the front door, the unidentified woman was still there and she helped the officer get the wheelchair out onto the porch.

By then, Chattanooga firefighters arrived on the scene and made sure everyone else was out of the structure. Two people were also in part of the house that had been converted into an apartment. Both got out safely.

Lt. Wadie Suttles with Engine 4 said the firefighters took in handheld hoselines and quickly extinguished the flames, containing the fire damage to the kitchen area. The rest of the house had some smoke damage.

The cause of the fire appears to be accidental. Lt. Suttles said Mr. McMath was cooking something on the stove and evidently left it unattended for a period of time. By the time he returned, a fire had broken out on the stove and spread to the cabinets above.

Volunteers with the American Red Cross of Southeast Tennessee were called in to provide assistance to the fire victims. Hamilton County EMS and EPB also provided valuable assistance on the scene. The identity of the good Samaritan was not determined.

Lt. Wadie Suttles talks with Mr. McMath to get information and check on his condition.
Lt. Wadie Suttles talks with Mr. McMath to get information and check on his condition.
- Photo2 by Bruce Garner

Councilman Hakeem Plans Workforce Development Initiative For District 9

District 9 City Councilman Yusuf Hakeem said he is planning a Workforce Development Initiative for the district.   He said it will be "a critical program to provide access, engagement, inspiration, training anddevelopment and empowerment to many District 9 citizens that desire to take advantage of the economic development and job growth that's taking place throughout ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ABLES, BRANDY L  9621 DAYTON PIKE SODDY DAISY, 37379  Age at Arrest: 39 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County FAILURE TO APPEAR --- ALLMON, MELISSA LYNNE  1608 NORTH CHESTER ROAD HIXSON, 37343  Age at Arrest: 26 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County VIOLATION OF PROBATION ... (click for more)

Proud Of Chattanooga And The Women's March - And Response (2)

I was very happy to participate in the Women’s March on Chattanooga yesterday afternoon. The diversity and the sheer numbers of women, men and children were incredible. One estimate was at least 3,000. Standing together with all of these like-minded souls was overwhelming and humbling.  I have rarely been so happy and so proud of my town.  One question is, why is ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Our Puzzling Women

After Rhonda Thurman left the “Enlightment” meeting of the Hamilton Country School Board Saturday afternoon, she must have been catching up on the news when she posted this message on her Facebook page: “I am really trying to understand. I am a woman and I cannot think of one "RIGHT" I do not have. Can someone enlighten me?” Not one person enlightened Rhonda because nobody could ... (click for more)

Big McClendon Curtis Leads Central Past Hixson

Central coach Rick Rogers knew this would be a long season for his Purple Pounder basketball team after his top seven players graduated last year. He’s exactly right, but things are headed in the right direction for Rogers as his team improved to 5-10 overall and 3-6 in District 6-AA with a heart-stopping one-point win at Hixson Monday night. That’s two wins in a row and the ... (click for more)

Cleveland, Bradley Central No. 1 And No. 2 In State Wrestling Poll

Now in its 25th year, The Poll is primarily a measure of  dual meet strength  with some consideration to individual tournament strength.   Votes are cast by a state-wide panel of high school wrestling coaches and are based on a maximum Power Ranking of 100%.   STATE POLL:   RANK ... (click for more)