“It Could Have Burned Me Up and I Could Have Died. Yeah, I Owe My Life to Him”

On 15 September 2015 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, Casey Dodson, age 19, saved the life of his quadriplegic father, Barton, after the van they were in caught fire. The van exploded. Barton said, “It could have burned me up and I could have died. Yeah, I owe my life to him. I don’t know what I’m going to have to do to re-pay him.” Casey said, “If I had not been with him, it would have been tragic because he was going to ride alone. It was a gift from God that I was with him.” While swimming 41 years ago, Barton was paralyzed in a diving accident. Casey said, “It makes me feel good about myself that I did that for him because he’s done so much for me in my life — I guess we are even.” Barton said, “All I saw [was] black smoke, and it was coming up around my head.” Casey said, “I’ll say the flames were about 10 feet over the vehicle, and the smoke was tremendous.” Barton said, “It could have burned me up and I could have died.” Casey said about the van, “It’s done, burned to pieces. [The fire] started right under here, under his seat.”

For More Information:

Sarah Denson, “Son saves quadriplegic father from burning car in Murfreesboro.” WKRN (Nashville, Tennessee). 18 September 2015


Laurie Hanna, “Hero teenager saves quadriplegic dad’s life by hauling him from burning van.” New York Daily News. 19 September 2015


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