Heroic teen helps girl from debris of burning home after Richmond Hill explosion

Michael Koerner: 'God sent me there'

INDIANAPOLIS - In the wake of the deadly south side explosion, the stories of heroic efforts of people saving lives continue to emerge.

Michael Koerner said he has no regrets. Moments after the south side explosion, the 17-year-old responded to a teenage girl's cry for help.

"I feel God chose me and sent me over there to help get her out," Koerner said.

The girl was outside surrounded by debris from her home.

"She was screaming. She had the phone trying to call 911. It illuminated her face, that's how I saw her," Koerner said. "I'm screaming, 'Ambulance, ambulance!' because she was covered in blood."
   
Koerner left the girl in the hands of a firefighter.
   
The high school junior was driving back home when he witnessed the deadly blast two weeks ago.

"I thought terrorist attack," he said.
   
His home was unable to absorb the force of the explosion and is now set for demolition.  

"I know evil was here, and two people were called home way too soon," said Michael Koerner's mother, Vicky Koerner. "But God was here too, and he has sent his army, and there were many that were protected and saved. There is no other explanation for that."

While Michael Koerner was outside helping a fellow teen, three other guys nearby including Kirk McDonald, his son David and nephew Andrew, were rescuing a trapped family before the house was consumed by flames.

On Friday, the McDonalds received an award from the Pacers for their heroic act.

Like the McDonalds, Michael Koerner said doing nothing was not an option.

"Common sense is like, why would you run toward a burning house that exploded? It doesn't make sense, but I believe God sent me there."  

Michael Koerner and the McDonalds are hoping to one day have a reunion with the people they rescued, but they understand that right now everyone is still coping with the shock of the situation.
 

Print this article Back to Top