Two Plainfield High School-Central Campus juniors are being called heroes after saving a home from being destroyed by a fire and rescuing a family’s dog from inside the home.
The two PHSCC baseball players Bobby Boekeloo and Ben Wielgos were going door-to-door on Sunday, March 11, 2018, selling assorted items to raise money for the team.
As they approached the home of Rob and Wanda Czerwinski and their daughter Kayle in the 3500 block of Stone Creek Court in Joliet, the pair smelled what they thought were fireworks. The family’s boxer Bella was the only one inside the home when the fire started.
Boekeloo and Wielgos said they heard a smoke alarm, as they got closer to the house.
The two 17-year-olds ran to the back of the house where black smoke and flames poured from the house.
Wielgos called 911, and Boekeloo returned to the sunroom in the back of the house to save Bella.
“I felt like I wasn’t going to get harmed because I knew the fire wasn’t near the dog,” Boekeloo said. “I love dogs so I thought I’ve got to save it.”
Rob Czerwinski was almost an hour away when the fire broke out.
He called the two teenagers heroes.
“The firefighters said if they would have gotten there four or five minutes later the house would have been gone,” Czerwinski said.
“Thank you for caring about other people,” he said of Boekeloo and Wielgos.
John Rosner, head baseball coach and dean of students at PHSCC, said he was not surprised Wielgos and Boekeloo came to the rescue.
“(Wielgos and Boekeloo) are great kids,” he said. “We are lucky to be surrounded by great kids on the baseball team every day.”