Nurse Who Risked Life to Save Patients From California Wildfire Receives New Pickup Truck

Zachary Stieber
By Zachary Stieber
November 23, 2018US News

A nurse whose truck melted and burned while driving through a wildfire in California to rescue patients from a hospital picked up a new truck he was gifted by Toyota.

Allyn Pierce braved the Camp Fire to drive to the hospital in which he was working in Paradise on Nov. 8 to rescue patients—twice.

Pierce was so close to death that he recorded a goodbye message to his family while flames engulfed the area around him. But a bulldozer knocked a path for him to drive through and he began to ferry patients away from the building.

Everyone ultimately made it out of the hospital. Pictures from the scene showed doctors, nurses, and others helping evacuate the patients as the sky darkened around them with flames and smoke.

“This truck literally saved my life today,” Pierce wrote in a post on Instagram.

“My little town of Paradise was literally burning down around me and @the_pandra got me to safety where I could help others … twice.”

truck burned in california wildfire
A nurse’s truck burned in the California wildfires after he made two trips to evacuate patients from the hospital in Paradise, on Nov. 8, 2018. (Help the Pierce Family/GoFundMe)

New Truck

Toyota heard about what happened and offered to give Piece a new truck to replace the one that burned.

“We are humbled you’d risk your life and Toyota Tundra to drive people to safety,” their official account said in a comment on Pierce’s post. “Don’t worry about your truck, we’re honored to get you a new one!”

Pierce received the truck on Nov. 21, reported KRCR.

The company has also offered to take Pierce’s burned truck and display it in their showrooms as a testament to its durability.

Pierce wrote on Instagram, “Today @toyotausa let me see the people that stand behind the logo. There were handshakes, conversations, and hugs. The sincerity and compassion that’s been shown by this company was demonstrated all the way down to a human level.”

Evacuation at hospital in Paradise
Patients are quickly evacuated from the Feather River Hospital as it burns down during the Camp Fire in Paradise, Calif., on Nov. 8, 2018. (Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)

Pierce’s friend also launched a GoFundMe for him, asking people to donate. The friend, Chelsi Jones, said that Pierce and his family are staying with a relative after their house burned down.

Pierce and his wife both worked at the hospital and aren’t sure about their job futures. “They have a long road ahead like many families,” Jones said.

“This fund will help his family begin to find a new normal, a home with a yard for his dogs and help pay for day to day life since they both lost their jobs as well,” she added. The fund raised over $28,000 in 12 days.

As of Nov. 23, Camp Fire had burned over 153,000 acres and over 18,000 buildings, the state fire agency said. The fire has caused 84 deaths and three injuries. It’s 95 percent contained.


ntd newsletter icon
Sign up for NTD Daily
What you need to know, summarized in one email.
Stay informed with accurate news you can trust.
By registering for the newsletter, you agree to the Privacy Policy.