A teenager from the Bronx is being heralded as a hero after he passed away Wednesday. Lucas Silverio, 19, died due to the injuries he suffered after he raced through a high-rise engulfed in flames trying to save a 3-year-old girl.
According to the New York Daily News, Silverio was navigating his grandmother to safety before finding out 3-year-old, Yasleen McDonald, was separated from her mother while she was trying to escape the blaze.
Silverio darted up 14-flights of stairs to try and save McDonald. He picked the little girl up and was able to make it down the stairs and out of the building where firefighters and EMTs were waiting, according to officials.
Both Silverio & McDonald have Passed Away
Silverio and McDonald have died due to severe burn injuries. As the two tried to escape they were both overcome by smoke and blasts of heat. According to officials, both the 3-year-old and Silverio suffered burns over 80% of their body.
“Of course he tried his best. I applaud him. He died bravely,” Yasleen’s uncle, 22-year-old Luis Moreno, told the New York Post. “He was in his apartment and he heard her crying. I wish it could have turned out different.”
Silverio passed away in the hospital on Wednesday. McDonald died Monday, per the Post.
Silverio Is Regarded as a Hero
The heroics of Silverio are not going unnoticed, as both Silverio and McDonald will live on eternally through the efforts the 19-year-old made.
“My heart is heavy for both my daughter and the kid who saved her,” Yasleen’s mom, Jasmine Moreno, told the NY Daily News. “He’s a hero. My saved my daughter without even …. my condolences. I’m going to keep them in my prayers.”
According to officials, Silverio was able to locate Yasleen through her shrieks and screams. She got separated from her mother after Moreno tripped and got lost in a cloud of heavy smoke.
“I was shocked that a 19-year-old would go into the fire,” Yasleen’s great uncle Willie Colon, 52, told the NY Daily News. “That guy is going to be in my heart forever.”
Moreno hopes to correspond with Silverio’s family, as the two both plan for unexpected funerals.
“He had a beautiful spirit and a heart of gold,” Jesse Alvarez, the second cousin of Silverio told the NY Daily News. “He had a heart the size of this planet. I want New Yorkers to take away that a hero died, and that hero’s name was Lucas Silverio.”
Willie Colon will remember his great-niece as a beautiful little girl whom everybody loved.
“She was a sweetheart,” he said. “A real sweet little girl, smart girl. She didn’t have a chance to live. Everybody loved her.”
Silverio Was Studying to Become a Physical Therapist
Silviero, whose father is a doctor, was studying to become a physical therapist. He was in the shower when the fire started.
According to the NY Daily News, his mother was the first to notice the fire. It was then Silverio and Alvarez helped his grandmother get downstairs.
As Silverio and his cousin were taking their grandmother down, Silverio heard the screams of Yasleen’s mother. He then left Alvarez with his grandmother and went to help the woman who was screaming, per Alvarez.
Silverio and Alvarez were successful in saving his grandmother, Nidia Torres, who was later hospitalized for burn-related injuries.
According to officials, the blaze was started in the trash compactor on the 14th floor but authorities are still investigating the cause of the fire, per the New York Post.
Ten others were hospitalized because of the blaze.