Via Fox News:
As a Vietnam veteran’s home went up in flames, one firefighter thought quickly on his feet to preserve a patriotic symbol.
Allen Skomer, who is also a veteran, was working to extinguish the massive flames at the Toledo, Oklahoma, home on Friday around 1 a.m. when he spotted the flag’s colors flying between the house and a small adjoining structure alongside it.
“I was helping one of the rookies throw a stream in between those two structures, to keep that second structure from burning,” Skomer told WTOL. “That’s when I noticed the colors waving with the flames behind them.”
Immediately, Skomer sprang to action, grabbing the flag and carrying it carefully so it wouldn’t touch the ground before resting it on the bumper of his fire truck, a safe distance from the aggressive flames. At the time, he didn’t know the man whose home he was attempting to salvage was a veteran as well. His quick response, he said, was an easy one after his eight years with the United States military.
“I didn’t want to let it burn, so I went and grabbed it,” he said. “I’m an eight-year veteran of the Navy. It’s just a knee-jerk reaction. I didn’t want to see the colors go up. I would never knowingly let the flag go up in smoke or be desecrated in front of me if I can help it.”
It was lucky that Skomer chose to grab the flag when he did. Soon after, the roof of the Vietnam veteran’s house caved in, destroying the home and everything inside it. Firefighters were able to stop the adjoining structure from being completely burned down, but the American flag remains one of the only items to come out of the fire unscathed.