FDNY firefighter saves boy, 4, from locked hot car
Firefighter Matthew Clinton, 29, broke the window with a hammer to get the four-year-old out of the car
By John Annese
New York Daily News
QUEENS, N.Y. — A city firefighter rescued a sweating, crying 4-year-old boy from a hot car after his father left him alone in the parking lot of a Queens shopping center Thursday afternoon.
Firefighter Matthew Clinton, 29, saw the boy trapped in the car at the plaza on 20th Ave. near 132nd St. in College Point just before 4 p.m.
People had gathered around the car when Clinton and two out-of-town colleagues happened upon the scene.
“The kid was in the car seat. He couldn’t unlock the doors. The kid was crying that it was hot in the car,” Clinton said.
Clinton asked if anyone had something to break the window, and a man handed him a hammer.
The firefighter smashed the driver’s side window and got into the car.
The boy was conscious, alert and able to stand, he said. “The kid was obviously scared,” Clinton said.
Medics took him to Flushing Hospital as a precaution, cops said.
Clinton, who joined the FDNY 2 1/2 years ago and is normally assigned to Engine 275 in Jamaica, said he was glad he was in the right place at the right time. “I’m just happy that we were there to help and that it didn’t turn out poorly,” he said.
Police charged the father, Geremie Ram, 42, with reckless endangerment, endangering the welfare of a child, and criminal possession of a controlled substance.
The rescue comes less than two weeks after a Rockland County man left his 1-year-old twins to die in his sweltering car for hours when he went to work at a Veterans Affairs hospital in the Bronx.
“The FDNY urges New Yorkers never to leave children alone in a car on a warm day, even if you think the temperature outside isn’t hot enough to cause harm,” FDNY spokesman Myles Miller said.
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