Apollo Elementary School Students, Tomi and Ty Lorance, Recognized as Heroes
In a ceremony broadcast over their elementary school's in-class video system, Tomi (7) and Ty (11) Lorance of Titusville were recognized by Titusville's Interim Fire Chief Scott Gaenicke and Life Safety Specialist Reggie Belle for the siblings' quick actions during a house fire in May.
Tomi was the first to awaken in her bedroom to the smell of smoke during the early morning hours of May 14 and quickly roused her brother Ty. Ty immediately went to his parent's bedroom telling his mother, Sheri Lorance, that the house was on fire. Although Sheri did sustain burns to her feet, Tomi, Ty, two other siblings and parents Sheri and Joe Lorance all were able to escape the devastating fire that ultimately destroyed their home.
During the awards ceremony, Life Safety Specialist Reggie Belle noted that the children had paid attention to fire safety tips and practiced what they'd learned. Fire Chief Gaenicke presented Ty and Tomi with rescue heroes plaques that their father, Joe, had secured. "You are definitely recue heroes in our eyes," Gaenicke said. Sheri Lorance summed up the significance of the event. "Obviously, I'm very proud of them, because we wouldn't be here if it weren't for them."
October 7-13 is Fire Prevention Week throughout the United States. The outcome for the Lorance family was positive, with 6 lives saved by the quick thinking and the action of their children, Tomi and Ty. But, as Chief Gaenicke reminds us, over 83% of civilian fire-related deaths are from home fires. "Developing a home fire safety plan and practicing that plan, along with installing and maintaining operable smoke detectors, gives you the best chance of avoiding becoming a statistic in next year's fire death reports." He urges all Titusville citizens to ensure the safety of themselves and their loved ones by Practicing the Plan.
Literature for families to utilize in preparing their emergency escape plans, along with fire safety-themed handouts, will be available at the department's fire safety exhibition on Saturday, October 13 from 10:00 to 2:00 at the Police Hall of Fame, located at 6350 Horizon Drive in Titusville. Also on display will be apparatus from Titusville Fire and Emergency Services Department, including the department's restored 1925 American LaFrance fire engine.