Tensions have been high across the United States following the protests over police brutality and racism, after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis highlighted the struggle to establish trust between law enforcement officers and their respective communities. However, for Daylan McLee, the situation he found himself in had less to do with decisions and more to do with saving a life.
On a Sunday evening in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, a city 45 miles outside of Pittsburgh, 31-year-old Daylan McLee thought he felt a small earthquake, when a relative told him otherwise. A police cruiser outside his apartment had been involved in a car crash that set the patrol car in flames.
McLee didn’t even think twice before he ran outside and pulled the Officer Jay Hanley from his burning car, right before the flames reached the police officer. Officer Hanley underwent surgery in a hospital in West Virginia for a serious leg injury from the crash and is already recovering, and his colleagues and family have credited McLee with saving the officer’s life.
Uniontown Police Lt. Thomas Kolencik told tv station WTAE-Pittsburgh, “Daylan actually said, ‘I’m not going to let him die.’ There’s just no words to describe, you know,” thankful for McLee’s immediate actions.
McLee commented, “I don’t know what came across me, but I ripped the door open and just pulled him to safety across the street.” He said that Officer Hanley’s sister also called him to personally express her gratitude and that it never crossed his mind to hesitate help save another human being’s life, despite his previous interactions with law enforcement.
“No. There is value in every human life. We are all children of God and I can’t imagine just watching anyone burn. No matter what other people have done to me, or other officers, I thought, ‘this guy deserves to make it home safely to his family.’”
Daylan McLee says when he saw a Uniontown officer pinned inside a burning police cruiser Father’s Day he thought, “I know this man is my brother through Christ and I couldn’t leave him behind.” He is credited with saving the officer’s life. A hero’s message @KDKA Tonight.