Girl who saved family from fire honored as hero

A Hayward elementary school student who helped her family out of their burning home last month using skills she learned in school was honored at Hayward City Hall Wednesday for her heroics, Hayward school officials said.

Galaxy Kung, 9, woke up to smoke and flames at about 7 a.m. on Aug. 14 in her family’s second floor apartment in the 2000 block of Arroyo Place, near Mt. Eden High School. With the apartment full of smoke, Galaxy remembered her fire safety training from school.

She made her way to her father’s bedroom and asked him to open a window and dampened a towel to put under the door to block the smoke coming into the room. A nearby construction crew put a ladder to the window to help Galaxy, her father, and five other relatives escape from the apartment.

It took firefighters about 20 minutes to control the fire, which had started in the kitchen but spread throughout both floors of the 1,800-square-foot building, Hayward fire Capt. Don Nichelson said.

The fire appears to have started with a rice cooker, Nichelson said.

Hayward schools Superintendent Stan “Data” Dobbs said:

We are thrilled that Galaxy and her family escaped what is certainly every parent’s worst nightmare and we couldn’t be more proud to honor her.”