Albemarle Teen Hero Honored

By: Sarah Batista
By: Sarah Batista

March 6, 2006

The General Assembly recognized one Albemarle County teenager for saving a family friend from his own burning home.

It was all smiles for Landon Hatfield's family today. During the General Assembly, Delegate Rob Bell presented the 15-year-old with Joint House Resolution 249. The award recognizes Hatfield for saving a family friend's life during a house fire back in August.

"He could have just called 911 and waited for help to arrive; instead he went into the building found the woman, got her on the roof and helped her get to safety, and because of what he did, she's probably alive today," said Republican Delegate Rob Bell, 58th District.

Hatfield was the only other person at home that day. He says running inside his burning house was a split-second decision. The idea of risking his own life never crossed his mind.

"It's something that needed to be done and needed to be done then, and I was there. I just did it," said Hatfield.

It was an act of bravery that labeled the Albemarle High School student a hero. One that will now go down in the history books for everyone to remember. It's just one more reason to make his mom proud.

"He's my son you know, he's pretty special and a lot of people think he's pretty special too," said Hatfield’s mother, Suzanne Coffey.

Hatfield tells us he's focusing on making it to the Olympics as a speed skater. As for his family, they plan to move back into their rebuilt home within the next few months.

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