Police: Quick-thinking teen saves officer's dog from fire

DAMASCUS, Md. (WUSA9) -- A quick-thinking 13-year-old girl is credited with saving the life of a police officer's dog who was trapped in a house fire.

Wednesday, she was presented with a Citizen's Public Safety Award for her actions.

On May 14 at approximately 4:30 p.m., Eva Soderstrom saw smoke coming from her neighbor's home in Damascus and alerted her mom to call 911.

When Montgomery County police officer Nicole Gamard heard the dispatcher ask for assistance with a house fire, she immediately realized that the address was her own and worried for the safety of her two dogs, Quest and Frenzy, who were in the house.

Upon arrival, Gamard saw Montgomery County firefighters break in through the front door, where her two dogs were found close by through thick smoke.

Fire and rescue officials quickly provided Quest with oxygen, but Frenzy was in worse condition and had to be intubated. Quest survived the fire, Frenzy did not.

On Wednesday, Gamard and the Montgomery County police department recognized that although the fire may have taken the life of the other dog, Quest likely would not have survived had it not been for the alert and quick-thinking of Soderstrom.

"A lot of people worked really hard to get Quest back to me, and I am thankful to all of them," Gamard said. "But, it all started with a 13-year-old named Eva. Other people in the neighborhood saw smoke coming from the house but did not call 911. The fact that a 13-year-old stepped up and knew to call 911 is tremendous to me."


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