Neighbors Elizabeth Cocker (left) and Shelley Redmon stand in Redmon’s kitchen Thursday, June 23, a day after Cocker saved Redmon’s Dayton home from a fire.

The Dayton woman who saved her neighbor’s house from a fire is hailed as a hero. Elizabeth Cocker said she was preparing dinner for her family on Wednesday afternoon when she heard a loud knock on her door.

“That was not a welcome knock. I opened the door and the neighbor’s daughter yelled for me to help her. I went into mommy mode,” Cocker said. “I didn’t know if my neighbor was at home, but when I saw the face of this child, I knew that I had to help.”

Realizing that her neighbor’s house was on fire, Cocker grabbed her fire extinguisher and rushed out the front door, her husband Geoffrey not far behind her. Outside the neighbor’s door, Cocker saw that the fire was coming from the kitchen where her neighbor Shelly Redmon was grilling fish for her family.

Dayton neighbors Elizabeth Cocker and Shelley Redmon arrive on Thursday after Redmon paid a surprise visit to Cocker’s home to thank her for saving Redmon’s home from a fire.

Without thinking about her own safety, Cocker took a deep breath, dropped to all fours, crawled through the living room and dining room, and then into the kitchen, where she put out the flames with a small fire extinguisher.

“Once I put out the fire, I sprayed some more. At that point, I had to crawl out because the smoke was choking me,” Cocker said.

By the time firefighters arrived a few minutes later, Cocker and Redmon had opened the windows to let the smoke out of the house.

Despite the fact that the two families lived several houses apart on Merritt Street in Dayton for over a year, the fire was the first time the neighbors actually interacted. In fact, they didn’t know each other’s names.

“I only moved here last June,” said Redmon, a single mother of three who works in Dayton prisons.

According to Redmon, her home means the world to her as she worked hard to save up and buy it, and it’s the first home she’s ever owned.

“The fire was localized in the kitchen because of Elizabeth. Nothing else was damaged except for smoke damage. It is acceptable. The fire chief told me it wouldn’t be there if it wasn’t for my neighbor because of how quickly the fire was spreading,” Redmon said.

The fire destroyed her stove, the microwave above it, and several cupboards. Redmon has already contacted her insurance company about getting these items repaired.

“I just want to thank you for saving my house yesterday,” Redmon Cocker said during a surprise visit to her home on Thursday morning. “You saved my house and you saved the day.”

Cocker, a housewife of two children, would like to think she’s just being a neighbor.

“I don’t consider myself a hero. I think I’m just a good neighbor. I think if someone else was in my situation and they had a fire extinguisher, they would have done the same,” she said.

When they arrived, Cocker confessed that he had visited Redmon’s house once before.

“One day I went there and boarded up a board on your fence that was dangling so that your dog wouldn’t get out,” she said.

When they parted and went to different houses, promising to help each other again if such a situation arises, Redmon said: “My pastor told me that God sent me an angel.”

This photo shows the damage caused by the fire at Shelley Redmon’s home.

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