GRESHAM, Ore. – A man working inside a Gresham restaurant suffered burns to his arms and legs Monday afternoon but it could have been much worse, had it not been for two Good Samaritans.
Clint Sparks, 37, had been hired by Dea’s In & Out to do some work inside the restroom. He was reportedly using lacquer thinner when there was a flash fire.
He ran outside, his clothes ablaze, and rolled in the bushes. A man washing cars at the Dodge dealership next door saw what was going on and reacted fast, spraying Clint with water.
"I was shocked. It wasn't something yo see all the time. You just kind of pause for a minute but then I just walked over and stated spraying him," said Good Samaritan Tom Plute. "I feel pretty lucky I was out here."
Sparks was rushed to Legacy Emanuel Hospital for treatment. Authorities said he had burns on 30 to 40-percent of his body. His uncle told KGW doctors said he will need to spend the next four weeks in the hospital, but he was expected to recover.
Dea's In & Out is located at 755 NE Burnside Road in Gresham. Damage to the inside of the building was estimated to be around $2,000.
A second Good Samaritan saved the business from sustaining more damage by using a fire extinguisher to put out the flames in the building before firefighters arrived. That man, Troy Mannthey, also works for Gresham Dodge and he had met the burn victim before.
"He's a really nice guy," Mannthey said of Clint. "You go in there get breakfast, he's sitting there at the counter and says 'Hi, how you doing, how's your day?"
(KGW reporter Katherine Cook also contributed to this report.)