HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — The story of Harrisonburg firefighters rescuing a dog two days after a massive fire in which everyone thought the dog was killed will air on national television this weekend.
Last year, a massive five-alarm apartment fire destroyed Harrisonburg's Southview Apartments, displacing dozens of JMU students.
A number of those students had pets.
About five hours after the fire was first reported, as firefighters swept the scene, one man was reunited with his dog, Echo, in a moment that quickly went viral.
But two days passed, with Kayla Blake thinking she had lost her four-legged friend, Rebel, forever.
Then, a miracle happened. When she stopped back by the complex with a friend to look at the burnt building, she heard barking coming from her old window.
She immediately called police and the fire department, who were able to walk up to the third floor through the debris. There, they found Rebel miraculously still alive, almost untouched, besides a burn on his nose, in the corner of her room under a desk.
"They walked up within a few minutes, five or six minutes later, we heard one of the firefighters yell, 'We got him!' and he looked out the window and gave me a thumbs up," said Blake.
Kayla Blake was reunited with Rebel, and their story warmed hearts not just in Harrisonburg, but across the country.
The firemen said the desk and a JMU flag hanging above Rebel were the only things in the apartment not burned by the flames.
Now, this weekend, Hearts of Heroes, a show hosted by Ginger Zee on ABC to showcase "the stories of men and women braving natural disasters" to rescue victims and restore their lives, will feature the firefighters who went into the building and brought Rebel out safely.
You can watch the episode featuring their story at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 15, on ABC.
Hearts of Heroes is co-produced by BELFOR Property Restoration, the world’s largest disaster recovery company restoring homes, businesses and communities following manmade or natural disasters.