UPDATE: Two construction workers rescue kids from fire - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Two construction workers rescue kids from fire

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A fire that started on a bed caused significant damage to an Evansdale duplex. (Michael Crowe, KWWL) A fire that started on a bed caused significant damage to an Evansdale duplex. (Michael Crowe, KWWL)
Crews work to extinguish a duplex fire in Evansdale. Two children were rescued by construction workers. (Michael Crowe, KWWL) Crews work to extinguish a duplex fire in Evansdale. Two children were rescued by construction workers. (Michael Crowe, KWWL)
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EVANSDALE (KWWL) -

UPDATE: A pair of construction workers are being called heroes for pulling two young children from a burning building.

As the fire spread, the screams came long before the sirens. It happened at a duplex on Bellefontaine St. in Evansdale.

“She just came running out, saying, 'My house is on fire, I need help getting my babies,” said Ryan Siems.

Siems and Travis Moen were out front pouring concrete for a new driveway. It Wendi Smith was hysterical -- trapped inside were her two young children.

Without thinking, they ran into the burning Evansdale duplex. They didn't pause – they didn't need to.

“I've never been known for thinking,” Siems said with a laugh. “Ever.”

“We ran upstairs and got him, came down, got the girl off the couch and got outside,” said Moen. “We looked back and you could see the flames.”

Both were pulled from the fire without injury.

“I definitely have a new friend,” Moen laughed, holding the young boy.

To call Smith thankful –

“If it wasn't for them, my kids wouldn't be here,” she said through tears.

She had first tried to save them, but the fire was too fierce. She's also pregnant, in her third trimester.

“Due in a month,” she said.

First responders were on-scene just seconds later – but without Siems and Moen, they say it would likely have been too late.

“I arrived probably 30 seconds after the call came out,” said Sgt. Jeff Jensen of Evansdale Police. “I couldn't even get to the front door, so that's how close it was that those guys ran up and grabbed the children.”

Both men are being called heroes for their quick thinking.

“I don't know how to feel about that,” Siems said. “We're just here doing our job. That's all we're doing. I have a son his age at home and I would never let anything happen to a little 2-year-old boy.”

So while acts like this might not be in the job description for pouring concrete – he said it feels like fate brought them together.

“I probably will for the rest of my life,” Siems said. “Yep. I've been in a lot of wrong places at the wrong times, and it's nice to be in the right place at the right time. Yep.”

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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ORIGINAL STORY: Two construction workers heard the screams of a mother and rescued her two children from a burning duplex in Evansdale on Monday.

Travis Moen and Ryan Siems were pouring concrete on a driveway in the 300 block of Bellefontaine Street when Wendi Smith came running out of an Evansdale duplex across the street, screaming that her bed was on fire and her children were inside.

The pair ran into the duplex through thick smoke to rescue her two children inside.

Fire officials told KWWL it's likely the children would not have survived if not for Moen's and Siems' efforts. Police arrived on scene just seconds later, and said the fire was already too hot for them to get inside.

Smith called the two heroes for saving Cole and Callie, her two children who escaped serious injury.

"If it wasn't for them, my kids wouldn't be here," Smith told KWWL.

"I don't know how to feel about that," Siems told KWWL. "We're just here doing our job; that's all we're doing. I have a son his age at home, and I would never let anything happen to a little 2-year-old boy."

No one was injured in the blaze. The duplex sustained significant damage. No cause of the fire has been determined yet.

Amie Steffeneicher contributed to this report.
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