As Flames Engulfed California Home, Good Samaritans Raced to Help

PHOTO: This cellphone video of a house on fire in Fresno, Calif., shows an unidentified man calmly walking toward the house and entering through the flames. Moments later he walks out with a man over his shoulder.PlayCourtesy Beth Lederach
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Michael Alcala wanted to help.

The student was passing by a Fresno, California, house fire Saturday when he heard screams; a man trapped inside, his daughter pleading for her father’s safety.

“He was yelling for help … nobody was able to see him,” Alcala, 22, told ABC News.

The fire started in the garage, quickly spreading, with flames and heavy smoke shooting from the home.

Robert Wells was trapped in his kitchen.

“He was supposed to be right behind me,” his daughter Roberta Denise Francis said. “I looked behind me, and he wasn’t there.”

The only way around the flames was over a side fence, then through the backyard. Alcala found Wells gasping for air, and flagged down a second man to help move Wells.

“We were carrying him out, and that’s when we were passing the garage … and just an explosion out of nowhere,” Alcala said.

A third good Samaritan – seen on video wearing a Dodgers baseball hat – carried Wells the rest of the way to safety. The identities of the men who helped Alcala remain a mystery. Alcala was proud to be a part of the rescue.

“I felt good walking away knowing they were safe,” he said.