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Homeless man storms into shelter engulfed in flames to rescue animals inside

Walker and dog Bravo dog-cat-serious
© Violette Ruffley - Facebook

An Atlanta man who rushed through an inferno to save animals trapped inside a shelter has been hailed a ‘guardian angel’ by local residents and emergency services.

By Nick Whittle

Published on the 01/01/2021, 12:00, Updated on the 08/02/2021, 13:23

On December 18th 53-year-old Keith Walker arrived at W-Underdogs to collect his old faithful Pitbull Terrier for a walk. Mr Walker, who has no fixed address, leaves Bravo at the shelter overnight. 

But this morning, as soon as he had the shelter in sight, Walker could see the building was on fire. Wasting no time he plunged into the flames to begin a rescue of the dogs and cats caught up in the fire, including his beloved Pitbull. 


HOMELESS MAN RESCUES ALL ANIMALS AT SHELTER AFTER IT CAUGHT ON FIRE A homeless man in Atlanta is being hailed as a...

Posted by Violette Ruffley on Monday, December 28, 2020

“Nervous as hell”

Speaking to CNN, Gracie Hamlin the shelter’s founder said that by the time she arrived at the shelter - after being notified of the fire – Walker was already darting in and out of the building in an attempt to save the residents.  

Walker, who was also interviewed, told reporters he was “nervous as hell”

Here’s everything you need to know about adopting an older dog. 

“I'm not going to lie,” he said, “I was really scared to go in there with all that smoke. But God put me there to save those animals.

“If you love a dog, you can love anyone in the world. My dog is my best friend, and I wouldn't be here without him, so I knew I had to save all those other dogs.”


Keith Walker has been homeless since he was just 13 years old, but one night in December he proved himself a superhero...

Posted by The Animal Rescue Site by GreaterGood on Tuesday, December 29, 2020

“Guardian angel”

Hamlin referred to Walker as her “guardian angel”. In a later statement she said she intended to do all she could to support the homeless man, and to provide him with shelter as thanks for saving the lives of the dogs and cats under her care. 

Watch also: Touching video of man and his dog proves happiness has nothing to do with money