Randy Grimm has rescued thousands of animals over the past several years. He's the guy who's dedicated his life to helping abandoned and feral animals through his foundation, Stray Rescue. As a reporter, I've gone along with him on some of these rescues. I've followed him into burned-out, abandoned homes in some of the roughest parts of the metro area, on both sides of the river.
He's traipsed through weeds that are waist-high and gone into buildings that are falling apart around him. But on Friday he met his match, so to speak. Grimm was trying to get a dog out of an abandoned home. The dog made its way to the second floor but couldn't get back down. That's because the staircase was badly damaged. Damaged not only from a fire from long ago, but also from the rain and snow that has fallen over the years into the house. There are holes in the roof. There is trash everywhere. There are trees growing INSIDE the house. You get the idea.
Grimm couldn't make it up the stairs. He flagged down some of the firefighters from Engine Company 9 in north St. Louis. He says they never hesitated. They went in and helped him rescue the dog and bring her out.
The Captain from Engine Company 9 gave his men permission to go inside and rescue the dog. He said if he hadn't they would have gone in on their own the next day and done it anyway. The dog had been up there a week according to neighbors. They wouldn't have let her starve.
Grimm says he has a whole new respect now for firefighters. He says they're fearless. He said, "I thought I was pretty fearless. I have nothing on them."