Two men honored for saving life in Rapid City house fire

RAPID CITY S.D. – At the Rapid City Common Council, it was a big ‘thank you- to two men that without their actions, a fire may have had a different outcome.

Gene Wittkowske and Jim McLendon were recognized with the Civilian Life Saving Citation for their actions during a house fire.

Back in November an apartment on Cherry Avenue in Rapid City caught on fire. Wittkowske and McLendon were working at Collins Siding when they saw Patricia Maki on her balcony, trapped by the smoke and flames.

They jumped into action, grabbed a ladder from their truck, and carried her down from the balcony.

“We’re not heroes, we’re nothing like that,” said McLendon. “We would have probably done it again, but a lot of people would have too. The fire department that showed up and got that guy out of the basement, those are the heroes, because they do it every single day.”

Wittkowske and McLendon were also awarded with a Challenge Coin from the fire department.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News, Traffic & Accidents