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Rosanne Ainslie

Rosanne Ainslie

Teacher Rosanne Ainslie was enjoying a well-earned lie-in when she heard shouting from her elderly neighbour's house.  She was about to risk her own life in a dramatic rescue.


Rosanne, 51, of Gullane, East Lothian, says: "I looked out and saw my neighbour shouting: 'There's a fire.'" She raced next door to the home of frail Dorothea Anderson, 88, to find flames coming from a cupboard.

She says: "The heat was intense. I ran to her sitting-room and, through the smoke, found her standing there, holding on to a chair. She was terrified of the steps and said: 'Just leave me here.'"

Rosanne had to move fast. The smoke was choking, and a melting smoke detector on the ceiling was raining down hot drips.

"I had to pull her fingers off the chair one by one and then coax her into the hallway, which took a long time," she says. But she eventually got Dorothea out to safety. Sadly, the old lady died in December from an unrelated illness.