Hero Boy, 8, Warns Residents of Fast-Moving Fire

An 8-year-old Tennessee boy is being hailed a hero after he alerted residents of a fast-moving fire in an apartment complex where firefighters had to lower two children out of a second-floor balcony to others on the ground.

Jonathan Bent was fast asleep when the fire began in an apartment in Lawrenceburg, Tenn., Wednesday around 2 a.m. and spread quickly through the complex. Jonathan immediately sprang into action and went door-to-door to warn residents.

"He was running everywhere. Knocking on this door, knocking on that door saying help, help fire, fire!" neighbor Sean Johnson told ABC News affiliate WKRN-TV in Nashville.


Arriving firefighters entered the building to rescue two of Jonathan's siblings, who were still stuck in the apartment. The stairwell leading to the unit was engulfed in flames, according to a firefighter's helmet cam. One of the children trapped had to be lowered from a balcony on the second floor to firefighters on the ground.

"Two of my sisters went off the balcony because they picked them up and held them on the edge and then dropped them. Then the policeman [caught] them," Jonathan told WKRN.

Fire officials say the fire began in a downstairs apartment when an elderly woman Jonathan was staying with fell asleep with a cigarette.

Because of the boy's quick thinking and the rescuers who caught the children, everyone made it out alive and uninjured.

"I don't like people dying," Jonathan said. "I just feel like a hero."