Off-Duty Firefighter Vinny Sottile Saves Woman From Burning Car En Route To Mohegan Sun Casino

NY Daily News - December 14, 2009

by Jonathan Lemire

A quick-thinking off-duty city firefighter leaped into action and saved a woman trapped in her burning car after a crash on a Connecticut highway, officials said Sunday.

Firefighter Vinny Sottile, 38, was driving south on Interstate 95 after a day at the Mohegan Sun casino at 3:45 p.m. Saturday.

Sottile said he jumped out of his truck and fetched his firefighter gear out of the back. He then extinguished the fire burning on the woman's boot, which had melted against her leg in her Volkswagen Beetle, he said.

The woman, identified as 56-year-old Janice Vaillancourt of Old Lyme, Conn., regained consciousness in an ambulance. She is expected to survive, officials said.

"I left Mohegan Sun up $5 and I saved a woman," chuckled Sottile, a 7-year-FDNY veteran who works at Ladder 167 in Flushing. "Not a bad day."