As Newton Police Officer Peter Wade arrived on scene to the smoke-filled building at 10 Auburndale Ave., he remembers a woman yelling at him about occupants inside.
And as he readied to run into the building, Wade's first thought was something one may not expect: he made sure his car was parked in the right spot.
“I didn’t want to be in the way of the firefighters,” Wade said, noting that he wanted to make sure the rescue workers could get to the building as quickly as possible.
Wade, , was awarded the Medal of Valor yesterday by Police Chief Matthew Cummings. Check out our video of the ceremony in our photos and video section to the right.
, Wade ran into the smoke-filled apartment building to check and see if anyone was inside. While in the building, he met off-duty Newton firefighter Nick McGrath, who had just rushed a family of three out of the second-floor apartment.
“We are enormously proud of your selfless acts and your dedication to duty,” Cummings said in his remarks yesterday.
Wade says he remembers bumping in to McGrath as he was rushing up the stairs. He said he yelled at McGrath to get out of the building, thinking he was a resident of one of the apartments.
According to police reports from March 30, Wade kicked in the first-floor apartment door to check and see if anyone was inside before he and McGrath exited the burning building.
Following the incident, Wade said he didn’t tell anyone what had happened and that word just managed to get out through the department.
, Mayor Setti Warren was on hand to thank Wade for his heroic efforts as well.
"Officer Wade stayed in the building; he stayed in the hosue when he could have left," Warren said. "That is the commitment, that is the pride of this department, that’s what makes this community what it is and that's why this police department is one of the best in the country. We stay with it, even in the face of perilous situations and danger."