Detroit man escapes apartment fire jumping from third floor

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A fire ripped through a Detroit apartment last weekend, sending residents running.

Marcus Thomas jumped to safety from a third floor window, is sharing his story. 

Thomas says he repeated the same thing over and over - "You've got to jump. You've got to just jump."

"I went to the window and I just decided I'm going to have to jump," said Thomas, 33.

Thomas, who has been living in his Detroit apartment on Woodward near Webb for the last two years, says Saturday morning after getting home from the gym he smelled smoke.

"When I opened up the door it was just completely dark," he said. "You couldn't see anything."

Thomas quickly realized he likely wouldn't be able to make it to the stairwell and grabbed whatever he could.

"I'm not sure why I grabbed some Tupperware, some socks," he said. "Luckily I did have one bag with my Social Security card, driver's license, birth certificate and stuff in it."

The smoke and heat became too much to bear. Thomas then jumped from his window 10 to 15 feet below and then another 20 feet to the ground.

"When I hit the roof, my ankle felt a little weird," he said. "And when I hit the ground I knew something wasn't right."

With his adrenaline masking his pain, Thomas unaware of his injuries until getting to the hospital.

"It was about the size of a softball," he said. "It started to get kind of painful then."

Undergoing surgery at Henry Ford Hospital, Thomas, with a broken ankle and fractured bone in his heel, is off of work as a patient technician at Saint John Hospital in Macomb for about 8-12 weeks.

"That was my first day off for 5-6 days."

He is unsure where he'll go once the hospital releases him.  Thomas, who is without insurance, lost everything in that fire. 

"Anything can happen to anyone, it is important to be as prepared as you can," he said.

But he still has his positive attitude.

"It could've been a lot worse," he said. "All in all, I'm pretty lucky."

If you would like to help Marcus Thomas, a GoFundMe page has been set up. CLICK HERE to donate.