FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – It was a snap decision, one made in a split second as Gail Rosner had done a thousand times over the last 40 years.
Rosner saw the fire, and she saw the man down. That’s when the retired nurse ran to perform CPR on a man she said was suffering from burns during a fireworks show in a southeast side neighborhood Sunday night.
The Associated Press reported that 43-year-old Noe Diaz died after fireworks exploded near his face Sunday night as he was setting off fireworks at his home.
The accident disturbed the Crown Colony neighborhood as residents watched on. For eight or nine years, Diaz had lit fireworks for the neighborhood show, several residents said.
“He’s gone,” said Trent Myles, another neighbor.
Rosner said she was outside watching the show when she noticed flashes close to the ground and then saw Diaz go down.
Rosner worked as a nurse for 40 years, and said she’d never had to perform CPR outside of a hospital setting until Sunday. She doesn’t know how long she aided Diaz, but she was eventually pulled away from emergency responders.
Rosner said the man had burns “mostly in the chest and neck area.”
Rosner, who earned her degree at Grace College in Winona Lake and last worked at the VA Hospital before retiring two years ago, has lived in the neighborhood for two decades. She is usually away for the Fourth of July weekend but happened to be in town this time.
A woman who owns the property where the accident happened did not answer her door.
A GoFundMe entitled “Noe Diaz” was set up to help his family with funeral and burial expenses. You can find the GoFundMe *here.
*WANE.com does not assure that the monies or donations deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a donation, you should consult your own advisers and otherwise proceed at your own risk.