An Emmett local is being hailed a hero for waking the Marrs’ family to alert them of a fire in their home. The incident took place in the early hours of July 23, 2020 when Amy Marrs awoke to a knocking on her front door. The person knocking was Danny Lara.
On Sept. 10 in Blazer Park, Lara received the “Gem Community Life Saver Award.” While saving people from a burning home may scare some, Lara has become accustomed to it. It was years prior that Lara’s own house caught on fire, having to save his family. Then in June 2020, a month before helping the Marrs family, his daughter’s home caught on fire in Emmett.
“Everybody was so giving to my daughter when she had a house fire that my heart went out to the Marrs family,” said Lara. “It was in my heart that I needed to help them.”
Help is exactly what Lara did. On his way home from work Lara noticed the Marrs’ house was on fire. Stopping, he ran to their front door and began banging on it as loudly as he could to awaken and alert anybody inside.
“I received a call at 12:33 a.m. from my neighbor that my house was on fire,” said Amy Marrs, the victim of the fire. “I remember hearing loud knocking and it was Danny. It could have been a very different outcome if it wasn’t for him.”
Lara informed the Marrs’ family their house was on fire and, while disregarding his own safety, helped them to get the children out of the house, personally carrying out the Marrs’ five-year-old daughter. After the family was out, he re-entered the home to let the pet dog out of its kennel. Later, he returned on two occasions with food, treats, clothing, cash and items for the children.
“Showing great valor, courage, perseverance, and uncommon compassion, Danny Lara has well earned the title of Gem Community Life Saver,” said Mayor Gordon Petrie.
It was at the end of the award ceremony that Marr’s handed Lara a gift. “You didn’t have to do this,” he said. “You didn’t have to do what you did either,” smiled Marrs.
“I am so proud of him,” said Lara’s wife. “He’s a hero.”
Investigators from the Idaho State Fire Marshal’s Office concluded that the fire originated from a malfunctioning refrigerator in an RV. The fire extended into the adjacent structure and caused significant damage. Three family pets perished in the blaze. A female occupant of the RV was able to escape, but suffered burns to her arms.