A group of Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps members ran into a burning building in Worcester to help residents out earlier this week.

The four friends, all members of the ROTC program at North High School in Worcester, said the values they have learned in ROTC led them to run toward danger to help people.

The young men were driving back from a Friendsgiving just before midnight on Wednesday when they spotted the flames.

“You could see the flames heavy coming out the back,” Marquis Bell said. “It was just crazy because I wasn’t really thinking, like about how much danger I was in. I was worried about how bad the people in the building are, like if they are in a bad situation right now and if we can help them to get out. It was mostly just an adrenaline rush.”

The teens got to the scene before first responders, so they, along with another passerby, rushed into the building, breaking down doors and waking people up.

“We started to knock on the door but no one answered so we kicked down the door,” Raesean Goodney said. “We searched the house to see if anyone was in there and they were all in the room sleeping.”

Danielle Cormier, a resident of the building, was asleep inside.

“I woke up to five men standing at the end of my bed screaming at me,” Cormier said. “I had no idea what was happening. I was so scared.”

The four men got Cormier and her three children out, as well as the family above them on the third floor.

“I owe them more than I could ever repay them,” Cormier said.

Fire crews arrived after and the feeling of relief set in.

“What touched me the most was when the little boy that I carried out, he came up to us after and he thanked us,” Goodney said.

Cormier said the bravery of the teens and the other good samaritan should be a lesson for everyone.

“If you have a chance to do something nice and kind, do it because you can change someone’s life,” Cormier said. “Little acts of kindness make miracles.”

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