Ardmore Fire Chief Still Hospitalized Following Rescue of 102-Year-Old
Merion Fire Co. of Ardmore Chief Tom Hayden was hospitalized Friday night following a fire in Villanova.
Merion Fire Company of Ardmore Chief Tom Hayden is still hospitalized, following his rescue of a 102-year-old woman from a smoke-filled Villanova home on Friday night.
On Friday, the Merion Fire Co. of Ardmore was called to assist in a fire at 2231 N. Stone Ridge Lane in Villanova, following reports that residents were possibly trapped inside.
Hayden arrived on the scene in his own vehicle. A large kitchen fire had caused heavy smoke throughout the house, and a 102-year-old resident was trapped in a rear bedroom, according to Tony Van Dyke, Merion Fire Co. assistant fire chief. Another resident was trying to help the woman escape the home.
Hayden helped the two residents out of the burning home; a third resident was already outside on the lawn, according to Dan Kincade, chief of Bryn Mawr Fire Co.
Hayden was taken to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania to treat him for smoke inhalation.
A message posted on the Merion Fire Co. website reads:
The Merion Fire Company would like to thank our local community and the fire service community for all of the offers of assistance, prayers and kind wishes over the past three days after Chief Tom Hayden was injured while rescuing residents from a dwelling including a 102 y/o victim from a house fire in Bryn Mawr on Friday evening, July 27th.
Chief Hayden continues to be treated for his injuries at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania where he is surrounded by his family. Chief Hayden is expected to make a full recovery from his injuries.
As of Tuesday morning, Hayden remains in the hospital, where he is "recovering nicely," according to Van Dyke.
Some Patch users expressed their gratitude in the comments section of Patch's article about the Villanova fire.
"Tom Hayden is one dedicated man for Lower Merion Twp. Quiet, reserved, but always ready and willing. I hope others notice his dedication," read one comment.
"You won't anybody more dedicated than Tom Hayden. Even to the point of risking his life to help another. I hope Lower Merion residents know that all firefighters are willing to do this for them. Just for no pay, just the satisfaction of helping another," Rick Kelly said.
"Very appreciative of tom," another comment read. "I pray that if something of this nature ever happens to anyone in my family or myself, there is a heroic man such as mr hayden to help is out. Thank you Tom Hayden, you are a true american hero!"
Hayden is also one of seven firefighters who were honored in January with the “Bryant True Heroes Award." The men received the award after rescuing a Haverford man trapped in an SUV that had been swept into dangerous floodwaters in September.
The fire company is still awaiting word on when Hayden will be released from the hospital.