Hero National Guardsman Bends Door To Rescue Man From Burning SUV

Illustration for article titled Hero National Guardsman Bends Door To Rescue Man From Burning SUV
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How far would you go to help someone you've never met? Would you bend the frame of a car door while the rest of it burned to get that person out safely? That sounds insane, but it's exactly what a 52-year-old Minnesota man did this week to save a stranger.

TV station KARE11 reports that Robert Renning, a sergeant in the state's Air National Guard, was driving down Interstate 35W near County Road D on Sunday evening when he saw a 2006 Chevy Trailblazer driving on fire next to him. He flagged down the driver, who pulled over.

The driver, Michael Johannes, said his speedometer went to zero and the brakes failed, but when he managed to pull the SUV over it was already smoking. He struggled to escape.


That's when Renning ran over and bent the locked car door with his bare hands while the SUV burned to get the Johannes out safely.

The TV station reports Johannes suffered minor smoke inhalations and cuts from the escape, but Renning was unharmed because he is clearly superhuman.

"I have get over that what if? Leaving my child without a father, I have a seven-year-old," said Johannes. "Someone risked their own life to save mine, that's all I can really say, that is the emotional part."

Renning, of course, was pretty humble about the situation.

"I'm just glad he's okay. I'm glad he is okay and able to spend the time with his family today. I don't think I did anything different than anyone else would have done had they gotten into the car ahead of me. That's just my take," said Renning. "I helped him out of the car. That's good enough."

Renning said he doesn't remember much about pulling the car door off, but said he grabbed hold of the top of the door, and leveraged his foot to yank it loose.

"It's funny because my family was teasing me last night that it seemed silly to run towards a burning car. I don't know. Somebody was in trouble. You are supposed to help each other out so I was headed his way to give him a hand," he said.


See? There are good people out there who are willing to help their fellow man for no reason. And some of them can bend car doors with their hands.

Photo credit MN State Patrol

Hat tip to 505Turbeaux!

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There is the lock/unlock button in a Chevy Trailblazer. Large, accessible, and in a pretty standard place, yes? And according to the stories, the driver was conscious and alert. So, why could he not just open the door and step out of the car?