A SOLDIER from Great Harwood has been awarded a commendation for rescuing a mother and baby from a burning building during the firefighters' strikes.
And Liverpool mum Kelly Turner was so grateful to Private Duncan Smith, who is a member of the Queen's Lancashire Regiment, that she made him the godfather of her child.
Private Smith was a member of a crew manning a Green Goddess in the Kirkby area of Liverpool on Friday 29 November last year.
The 24-year-old and his colleague, Private Lee North, 24, of Burnley, were called to a blaze at a block of flats early in the morning, and found that Kelly, 20, and her four-week-old son, Jay, were trapped inside.
The soldiers put a ladder to the window to rescue the pair, and Private Smith carried Jay to safety. He said: "I have a two-year-old son so I know what it means."
The heroic pair travelled from Catterick Barracks on Monday to receive their commendations from Chief Superintendent Paul Forrester, force operations manager for Merseyside Police.
Chief Superintendent Forrester said: "I am delighted to commend the actions of Duncan and Lee, who courageously made this rescue and were able to take Kelly and Jay to safety. Every time a Green Goddess crew responds to a fire call on Merseyside, they potentially face a situation as dangerous as this. Their selfless actions show their exceptional work and this is to be commended."
Lieutenant Colonel Jorge Mendonca, the commanding officer of the Queen's Lancashire Regiment, said: "I am delighted that two of my soldiers have received commendations from the Merseyside Police Force."