TRANSCRIPT

Saved Houston Residents from 16 Floor High Rise Fire, 1975

I discovered a high-rise fire and ran up 16 floors to evacuate residents in 1975.  I was returning on a Sunday afternoon from a trail ride. I had been riding trail rides for over 50 years, so I was coming back to the house.

Saved Houston Residents

Inwood Manor – 3711 San Felipe, Houston, TX

I was going down St.Felipe street and the Inwood Manor High Rise is on St. Felipe near River Oaks. I saw smoke coming out of the top floor of the building and it was billowing out. So I rushed in there, I parked my car and rushed in the lobby and went to the front desk. They didn’t even know there was a fire, so I told them that the top floor was on fire and that they needed to evacuate the building.  So, I knew better than to catch an elevator because I would get stuck some place, so I started running up the floors.

Well, let me tell you if you run up 16 floors you are exhausted by the time you get to the top as I was.  When I got there, I opened the door from the 16th floor lobby and smoke. Thick smoke was in the room down to except for 4 inches off the floor.

Saved Houston Residents

View from Inwood Manor

The first 4 inches there was no smoke, above that there was smoke. So I stuck my nose down into that 4-inch space where I could breathe. And then I went from door to door, banging on the doors getting people out to evacuate. I totally walked down the stairs and then I went back down myself. After I got everybody out and then the fire department arrived. The next day in the Houston Chronicles there was a story about a mysterious stranger who rushed in and saved everybody from death by fire.

 

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“Welcome’s efforts as an entrepreneur have enriched the community, led to better lives for untold numbers of fellow Texans, and inspired generations of admirers and followers to do greater things. My hope is that through reading this book, you will come to know Welcome W. Wilson, Sr., as I have–as a brilliant businessman, a loving family man and a proud Houstonian.”

Rick Perry
Rick PerryUS Secretary of Energy & former Governor of Texas
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