Willoughby police officer saves three elderly people from burning house

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WILLOUGHBY, Ohio-- A local police officer is being hailed a hero after witnesses say he rushed into a burning home to rescue three elderly people.

Just hours after fire ripped through a home on Hurricane Drive in Willoughby, restoration crews surveyed the damage Tuesday night.

“I am just saddened, very sad for these folks,” said Noel Cagnina, neighbor.

Neighbors said three elderly people are lucky to be alive thanks to the heroic actions of a Willoughby police officer who ran inside to rescue them.

“While our fire units were heading up that way, one of our motorcycle officers immediately went over to the scene and actually pulled three people from the fire,” said Lt. Jim Schultz, with the Willoughby Police Department.

Officer Shane Rahz has been with the department for almost 10 years.

“He’s one of our finest,” Schultz said.

Witnesses said the Willoughby Fire Department saved two dogs and a cat from the burning building.

“The fireman was laying down on the ground with the animals. It was very touching and very sweet,” Cagnina said.

Thankfully, no one was seriously hurt. The house appears to be a total loss.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

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