18 December 2007

“Tommy, come to the window! Come to the window!”

There was a fire Sunday night in Prince's Bay inside a 1920's-vintage Tudor.

The fire claimed the life of a 9-year-old boy, Thomas Monahan Jr.

The boy's father Thomas Monahan desperately attempted to save his son after he, his wife and his 8-year-old daughter all escaped safely.

Monahan's father had tried to rescue his son from outside the house, using a ladder at a second-floor window, calling for Tommy to come out. “Tommy, come to the window! Come to the window!”, he cried, but the smoke was too thick and the fire too intense. There was no answer.

Firefighters later found Tommy Jr. unconscious on the floor of his sister's bedroom. His body overcome by smoke.

A 12-year-old neighbour told a newspaper that “Everybody thought Tommy was outside, but he wasn't.”

No, Tommy had raced back inside the burning house to save his Yorkshire terrier, his lizard and fish from his room.

And though he briefly regained consciousness, Thomas Jr. was pronounced dead at 1:45 a.m. at Staten Island University Hospital.

The pets also died with Tommy.

Relatives said Tommy loved animals. Tommy's piggy bank money went to care for stray animals.

And an 8-year-old friend of Tommy's recalled, “He always asked me, 'If you see a snake come get me.' In my yard one time, I found a snake. He came over and we put it in a tank and then set it free.”

Tommy learned his love of nature and the environment from his parents. “He had a heart of gold for animals. He respected them and knew everything there was to know about them.”

It's not tragic to die while doing something you love.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a good kid, and a cute dog..I love animals, and every creature has a right to live, but to the parents, there can be nothing more tragic...so sad