9-year-old Rhae Parks wants to be a police officer when she grows up, but as far as far as her family’s concerned, she’s already a hero.
The family awoke in the middle of the night to the loud sounds of banging and popping coming from the garage. Rhae’s bedroom was above the garage. “I thought somebody was lighting fireworks outside our house,” she said. Her 3-year-old brother was in his crib, screaming. When she looked out her bedroom window, she saw the fire below, in the garage. Her parents were downstairs.
“I screamed, ‘Fire,’ and then I ran out my room and I was going to go down the stairs, and then (my sister) Nora, she started screaming, ‘Lenny’s still in his crib,’ so I ran to my little brother’s room and got my little brother out of his crib,” Rhae said, recounting the event. By the time her parents got to the foot of the stairs, Rhae had her little brother in tow and was heading down.
Rhea learned what to do in case of a fire from a school program led by the local fire department. The visiting firefighters teach the children to make a plan in case of a fire. Her family says it’s thanks to that program that she knew what to do during the emergency.
Photo: Glendale Arizona Fire Department