Canton man stops to help driver of burning SUV

CANTON, Ohio - Marquail White was on his way home from work Friday, when he says something told him he needed to pay attention to the SUV in front of him.

"I watched it and there were flames in the back of the vehicle," said White. "I told my wife's sister 'that truck is on fire, we have to pull over."

Within moments, the flames were spreading from the tailgate of the SUV to the back seat, White said.

"The only thing that I did actually see was flames. I mean it was real bright."

"The only thing that I was thinking about was the person that was actually in the vehicle," he added.

White said after the SUV came to a stop, he went to the driver’s door to help the man at the wheel get out of the vehicle.

"When I reached in to start pulling him out of the truck it was in flames," said White. "There was nothing he could have grabbed."

Within minutes, he says the flames were so intense the windows started bursting and he worried the SUV was going to explode.

White called 9-1-1 but the driver was out of the SUV by the time firefighters arrived.

Saturday, the Canton Fire Department confirmed the call, but could not identify the driver of the SUV to Fox 8.

White says he believed he was a businessman because he was worried about a suitcase that was inside the SUV and a leather jacket which had burned in the back seat.

If nothing else, White made a lasting impression on his children through his actions.

"I was proud of him and I wanted to make sure people would remember him, so that way they could do stuff like him, try to help other people," said Jayden Hallums.

"If it was happening to me, I would want somebody to do it too," said White.  "You never know what the next person might be going through."