MARYLAND

Retired fire Lt. Billy Mills saves woman from Bowie fire

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A retired Prince George's County fire lieutenant is being credited with saving a woman's life after her home caught fire Thursday morning.

"Twenty-one years on the job...I'd never just pulled up on something like that," Retired Lt. Billy Mills said of the fire on Pond Meadow Lane in Bowie.

Mills was driving through Bowie Thursday morning when he saw smoke coming from the home and headed right for it. Waiting for him was the resident's black Lab, "Pumpkin", who kept running to the back door.

"I was trying to get the dog to come back. I noticed there was a lady four or five feet in there on her knees with the fire blowing over the top of head...I crawled in two or three feet and pulled her out and took her in the yard," Mills recalled.

"The old instincts kicked in I guess," he added.

But don't call him a hero, Mills says he was just "doing the job".

He continued, "I think the real hero was the dog. He alerted me; he was all the way into the door trying to get her to come out."

The woman did suffer burns and smoke inhalation, but she is expected to recover. Pumpkin is being cared for by the county now. If his owner stays in the hospital, a local firefighter will foster him.

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