Earlier this month, parents trapped in a burning apartment building in DeKalb County, Georgia, were forced to throw their children three stories to the ground. Luckily, firefighters were there to catch them. Per the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Avondale Forest Apartments were ablaze on Jan. 3. When firefighters showed up, the adults on the third floor gave them little time to prepare a ladder for rescue, and instead began tossing their children over the balcony before jumping over themselves.
According to firefighters, the children were as young as 1-month-old. In the video above, Captain Scott Stroup is seen catching a toddler like he's practiced it a thousand times. In a way, he had.
"We were catching babies like a football—literally," Stroup's colleague Captain Eric Jackson told AJC.
Captain Jackie Peckrul, a mother of triplets, caught the infant. She initially planned to erect a ladder to rescue the children, but the parents acted quicker. According to Fox 5 Atlanta, Peckrul looked up and saw a baby wrapped in a blanket, falling down toward her.
"That was the only thing running through my mind: 'Lord, let me catch this baby,'" said Peckrul.
In addition to the heroic rescue of the children, firefighters also knocked down a door to save a wheelchair-bound woman. Overall, eight children and four adults were taken to the hospital with minor injuries, most attributed to smoke inhalation. AJC reports that the fire displaced close to 80 people.
No word yet on how the blaze began, but thank goodness it ended in the best way possible.