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FDNY EMS Lieutenant Leads Rescue Of Queens Family

A sharp-eyed FDNY Emergency Medical Services lieutenant led the daring rescue of a woman and her two young daughters from a Queens home being ravaged by fire yesterday - then learned he knew the woman's brother.

Lt. Paul Yunek said he was on patrol at 10:11 a.m. when he spotted flames in a third-floor window at 133-10 220th St. in Springfield Gardens. He called dispatch, he said, then ran to knock on the front door - hard.

"Nobody was answering, so I kicked it in," he said. "An adult female was [near] the door. I told her she had to get out of the house, that her home was on fire. "She told me her two children were still in the house."

Yunek, EMTs Tamara Coty and Lou Marin and paramedics Robert Caggiano and Steven Scarinzi eventually pulled the sisters, ages 4 and 14, to safety. No injuries were reported.

Only later did a surprised Yunek discover that the rescued woman's brother was an EMS technician who used to work for him. The FDNY did not release the names of the victims.

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