Four honored in Dubuque for getting students out during Loras Co - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Four honored in Dubuque for getting students out during Loras College fire

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) -

Four Dubuque radio station employees were honored Thursday morning by the Dubuque Fire Department and the State Fire Marshal for their role in alerting students to a fire at Loras College.

Josh Crowell, Lisa Bennett, Mike Callaghan and Tim Lary were awarded certificates of valor, after they ran into the burning Visitation Complex to wake up and help evacuate the 45 students inside.

Lightening struck the top of the building on March 16, starting that fire, and prompting them into action.

"The quote of the morning had to be, "that's a fire, dude." And that was the moment we knew we had to take action. We saw the alarms weren't going off, no one was leaving the building, and we knew it was a dormitory and classes were in session, so it was just kind of time to act," said Crowell, a radio DJ.

Crowell got into the building first, and immediately ran to the fourth floor--the floor closest to the fire--and started knocking on doors and getting students out.

"You don't really think when you're going through something like this, but I just remember it was a complete panic, because it's harder to break in, even when you're trying to make noise, it's harder to break into a building than people think," he said.

Loras College officials were also on hand Thursday morning with a proclamation from the college, praising the four for their heroic actions.

"So often times, incidents like this can end in tragedy and loss of lives. But by these four individuals coming forth, taking initiative, risking their lives, we have 45 students who are here alive today," said State Fire Marshal Jeffrey Quigle.

Loras also gave free season passes to all sporting events and theater performances to everyone at the station.

As for the building itself, officials say they should know by August what it's fate will be.

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