With so much going on in the world, it feels good to stop, recognise, and report on a story that warms the heart and reminds us that there are good people out there doing good things.
This is one of those stories.
In an act of selfless bravery, Delaware Police Officer John Kane, 22, truly honoured his oath to ‘protect and serve’ his fellow human beings.
On 16 April 2022, the Dewey Beach, Del. Officer was on a regular night shift that turned out to be one that he, and the seven people he saved, are never likely to forget.
After spotting smoke and an orange glow while driving on the Coastal Highway, Officer Kane went to investigate what he believed to be fire. After locating the source of the smoke on Swedes Street and Bayard Avenue, he observed the front of a residence ablaze with four vehicles parked outside.
Kane told 6 ABC Action News ‘with no one standing outside and no one calling 911 yet, ‘I knew I had to act quick because people were still in the house.’
Quickly coming to the realization that there was no 911 call in progress, the patrol officer contacted the Millville Volunteer Fire Company before entering the burning residence through the back door. The officer located six occupants inside and guided them to safety.
‘You know when you do this job, you may have to put your life at risk sometimes to help others. I just knew I had to help them and try to make sure everyone was safely out of the house at that moment,’ Kane said.
After the heroic rescue, Kane; off-duty and driving home after a 14-hour shift; was alerted by a radio call of a cardiac arrest in progress one street over from where he was located. Without thinking twice, he altered course to attend the call. The officer, along with a Delaware state trooper, assisted on the scene leading to the cardiac arrest victim surviving the medical incident.
Fourteen hours, and seven lives were saved – a remarkable demonstration of compassion, bravery, and the honouring of ‘oath.’
Kane has received praise from his community and on social media for his heroic actions, with the Millville Volunteer Fire Company which assisted the Rehoboth Beach VFC at the Bayard Street fires also crediting Kane for his heroic efforts.
Steven Deery, former president of the Delaware State Fire Chiefs Association posted on Facebook “Great job by this Dewey Police Officer. A true hero for saving the lives of 6 people prior to the FD arrival. You want to see a hero, here he is! Great job sir!”
While grateful for the support following his actions that night, Kane said he was thankful to be going home, adding ‘Not only did I get to go home, but everyone else got to go home.’