From left: Springvale, San Fernando, residents Joseph, Dexter, Orlando and Stephanie Oudit talk about their rescue of Nicolette Francis from a burning townhouse on Saturday night. – Lincoln Holder
The sister of the 31-year-old woman rescued from a burning house has thanked members of the Oudit family for “doing the right thing,” saying they went “above and beyond.”
Maya Mason said, “For the neighbours who went above and beyond to save her, we (relatives) thank them. She could have died. At the end of the day, they saved a life. It is the right thing that they did. We are glad that someone was there (to help).”
Mason’s sister, Nicolette Francis, remains at the San Fernando General Hospital in a stable condition. Francis is a mother of three and works as a cleaner. Newsday learnt that she had first-degree burns.
Mason spoke briefly to Newsday at the family’s home at El Guanapo Estate in Rio Claro on Tuesday.
She said, “She is good, and she is talking.”
On Saturday at around 8.30 pm, Dexter Oudit, 59, went to an apartment building next to the San Fernando Methodist School on Mon Chagrin Street to borrow $2 from a man to buy a cigarette.
He heard Francis, then-unidentified, screaming for help. She was saying she was locked inside the burning house and could not get out.
He tried to break down the door alone, then ran back home to call for back-up.
Four of his sons and a daughter came to the rescue, breaking part of the front door to get Francis out.
A male relative said the only person who spoke to Francis at the hospital was her mother.
“She is ok. I saw the video circulating on Instagram. What we see in the video is what we know.”
Asked about his views on the rescue efforts by the Oudit family, “I am not a social media person. I already spoke to them privately.”
When Newsday contacted the Oudit family, one of the rescuers said someone believed to be a relative sent a message on Instagram. The person asked for a phone number, promising to call.
Up to Tuesday evening, they did not get a call.
“We are just happy to save the woman’s life,” said the member of the Oudit family.
No one has been arrested.
Investigations are ongoing.