Heroic neighbor saves Kansas City family from fire

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A Kansas City family is safe after a very heroic deed by their neighbor.

Thursday night, Joe Cassidy noticed a fire had sparked in the basement of his neighbor's house near 75th and State Line. He also noticed several lights were turned on near the top floor of the home.

The Sollars family was inside, but upstairs, and hadn't noticed the fire.

Cassidy banged on their door, then dashed up two flights of stairs to rescue 6-year-old Tess from the family's finished attic. Seconds later, he says smoke filled the entire house.

Jonathan Sollars said by the time he ran downstairs to see how bad the damage was, his lungs were filled with black smoke.

He tried to rush back upstairs to find his children, but was having trouble breathing.

However, Cassidy had already sprung into action. He guided one son out to the door, consulted with the oldest daughter to find out how many people were inside and scooped up the youngest daughter and carried her safely into the front yard.

"You don't think about your life or anything like that. You just think, I've got to get them out," Cassidy said. "Anybody would have done it. I just noticed it first."

Before Thursday's fire, the Sollars family and Cassidy hardly knew one another. Now they're becoming close friends.

"God bless him," Jonathan Sollars said. "I'll always be indebted to him."

There were five family members in the house during the fire, and the Sollars credit Cassidy for making sure everyone got out safe.

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