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Dog Saves Man From Orem Blaze

Mar 3, 2004 5:03 pm US/Mountain

An Orem mobile home was destroyed by fire. A man's best friend played a part in a life saving rescue.

Nicole Boyd has more.

The heat from the fire was so intense that it bubbled the paint on a nearby car. Fire investigators say it most likely started by a candle in the living room area. Felix Asencio says his dog saved his life.

“When I opened my bedroom door the fire was right there in front of my face,” said Ascencio.

Asencio was asleep when the fire broke out around 3am. He said his dog Gizmo smelled trouble and jumped on his chest barking.

“He jumping at me a lot like wake up wake up something happened,” said Ascencio.

Asencio grabbed Gizmo and got out the back door.

“I go down, Gizmo's in front of me, I kick the door and I fall all the way here,” said Ascencio.

He went in to rescue his other dog, but the thick smoke and flames forced him back.

“I got the water hose and tried to save my other dog but it was too late she died,” he said. “Heat intensity from the fire made this all bubble up all the way down and broke the window, but that's no big deal.”

Asencio's neighbor called 911.

“I'm just happy to see he's alive and everyone got out alright,” said Norman Kocherhan, Ascencio’s neighbor.

“Obviously it started in this area because that's the highest degree of burn,” said Dave Thomas of Orem City Fire Department.

Nine hours later firefighters are still putting out hot spots.

“We just brought in some small hoses and ended up having to do some more salvage,” said Thomas.

Asencio escaped with only his life. He says it's a miracle. Gizmo is his best friend and much more.

“I think this is my hero, this is my hero. I lost one but this is my hero,” said Ascencio.

Felix did manage to pull a few clothes from the fire but he had no homeowner's insurance. For now he is staying with family here in town.