Greenville Burn Victim Dies On Same Night Hero Honored

A burn victim died, on the same night that the man who rescued her was honored by Greenville city council.

The Chapel Hill Burn Center confirms that 73-year-old Sherry Bishop died Thursday night at the hospital.

Walter Pratt was honored for his bravery in getting Bishop out of her West Point Road residence on April 16th. Pratt was next door visiting his own mother when he heard a boom and saw smoke.

Her two daughters were at the ceremony Thursday night.


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A man in the east was recognized Thursday for saving an elderly woman as her house went up in flames.

The City of Greenville recognized Walter Pratt as a hero and honored him for his bravery.

It was a night full of tears of happiness as the daughters of 73-year-old Sherry Bishop watched the man that saved their mother's life.

There was a standing ovation throughout the Greenville City Council Chambers Thursday night as Walter Pratt of Greenville was honored with a plaque for his heroism for saving Bishop only four weeks ago.

Bishop's house caught fire. Her daughters now have Pratt to thank for saving their mother's life.

"He was here. He saw the fire. He could have just hesitated and called 911 and waited, but he took action its not something you see every day," said Bishop's daughter Edie McLawhorn.

Pratt, who was visiting his mother who lives next door to Bishop, says he heard a boom and saw smoke.

"I could hear her voice calling for help and it was getting lower and lower and lower, and I said I'm going to have to go through the window and that's what I did," said Pratt.

Once inside, Pratt says he felt around for Bishop and then guided her back to the window, only able to see two inches in front of him. Once back at the window, Pratt lifted her to safety.

"The first thing I thought of was I need to save her life," said Pratt.

Because Pratt never hesitated, Bishop's three daughters still have their mom.

"Phenomenal, as far as I am concerned he came straight from God. You know, people say be at the right place at the right time. That's God's timing," said McLawhorn.

Timing and selflessness that now has a family crying tears of joy their mother is still alive thanks to the actions of a complete stranger.

Bishop's daughters say that she is now off the ventilator and has been brought out of her medically-induced coma.

They tell us the next step is for the burns to begin healing. Bishop is still at the UNC Burn Center in Chapel Hill.


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  • by Honored Location: NC on May 13, 2011 at 12:27 PM
    Regardless this man is truly a hero, I'm glad he was honored. We cannot change God's will, may the victim rest in peace.
  • by Anonymous on May 13, 2011 at 12:19 PM
    It really touches my heart to see that there are still some good people in the world. Thank you for your selfless act. I am very sorry to hear about the passing of the burn victim. May God be with the family.
  • by me on May 13, 2011 at 10:19 AM
    I am so sorry to hear that she died!!
  • by B Location: Gville on May 13, 2011 at 07:33 AM
    Thank you for having a good heart. God knew to put him there that day.
  • by Just Me Location: Greenville on May 13, 2011 at 06:19 AM
    What an awesome story and what an incredible man! It's so nice to see that there are still kind and selfless people like Mr. Pratt in the world. You are truly a hero! May God Bless you
  • by Me on May 13, 2011 at 05:55 AM
    What a blessing this lady received in being saved. God has other plans for her. This man was remarkably brave. Bless you.
  • by Enough is Enough Location: Greenville on May 13, 2011 at 04:21 AM
    In this day and time where only news of robberies, shootings and rapes make the headlines, what a breath of fresh air to read about someone like Mr Pratt. Sir, may God richly bless you for your ultimate act of unselfishness. Thank you for doing what you know to be right.
  • by Labbrat on May 13, 2011 at 04:13 AM
    What an amazing story! You are truly awsome!!!
  • by Firefighter/Medic Location: ENC on May 13, 2011 at 02:53 AM
    I get paid to do this job, and with all the protective gear we wear it is still scary. In my 14 years, I still have a fear of structural fires. It is truly awesome the bravery Mr. Pratt showed. Glad you were not injured. Job well done!!!!!
  • by virgie Location: greenville on May 12, 2011 at 11:49 PM
    GOD IS SO GOOD THAT WAS A TRUE BLESSING WHAT HE DID WE STILL HAVE SOME GOOD PEOPLE AROUND. HATS OFF TO YOU MY BROTHER
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