Video Captures News 9 StormTracker Barely Escape Wildfire
DEWEY COUNTY, Oklahoma - First responders know the dangers of these fast-moving wildfires better than anyone else. But even for a seasoned storm tracker and veteran firefighter like Marty Logan, the flames can be a surprise.
"When I took off running, I didn't look back," said News 9 Storm Tracker Marty Logan.
It's a moment Marty won't soon forget, as he barely escapes a wall of flames.
"You can't panic, inside you can be rolling and tumbling, but you have to keep composure because you have a job to do and you have to do it where no one gets hurt," he said.
It was April 12, the first day wildfires took off across northwestern Oklahoma and Marty spent the day tracking them.
"My job is saving lives," he said. "That's what I want to do. I'm destined for it."
His passion to keep people safe puts him in harrowing situations, though, but nothing like what he drove up to this day. Marty sees another truck up ahead and trapped cattle behind the fence. So, he stops and takes off running.
"You know this is somebody's livelihood," he said. "They're alive. You don't want anything alive to be burned up."
In the video, you can see Marty as he feverishly works to try and get the gate open, then realizes he's in trouble.
"When I looked back over their heads, I saw the fire crown a hill, and it was coming right at us," he said. "I knew then I didn't have enough time to go in and move the cattle out to the road to try to give them a chance."
Marty runs for his life as the flames close in behind him.
"The fire is nipping at my back side, that's nearly a 60-year-old sprint right there," he said. "When I got back into the pickup, I saw the fire come to the fence and start working towards me. And this is all happening in half seconds, quarter seconds."
As he hit the accelerator to back away from danger, he's unsure if his efforts saved the cattle.
"The way you've got to think about that, is those cattle are somebody's IRA, their college savings, their payment to the bank, the way they put their food on the table," he said.
And so if he had the chance, he says he do it again.
"I would still go in," Marty said. "Now my two daughters, I was told that I can no longer go after cattle."