Nashville Police Officers Called Heroes as Stories Emerge of Lives Saved From Explosion

Prior to Friday's explosion in Nashville, six police officers risked their lives after spotting the suspicious RV announcing it would explode soon. The officers made sure to evacuate nearby residents, avoiding further tragedy, with many people calling them heroes following the explosion.

A press release from the Nashville Police Department recognized the six officers: Brenna Hosey (who's been with the department for 4 years), James Luellen (3 years), Michael Sipos (16 months), Amanda Topping (21 months), James Wells (21 months), and Sergeant Timothy Miller (11 years).

Metro Police Chief John Drake described what the officers did at a press conference on Christmas Day. "They encountered an RV that had a recording, saying that a potential bomb would detonate within 15 minutes. Officers, upon hearing that, decided to evacuate buildings nearby. So they began knocking on doors, making announcements, having emergency communications, communicating with everyone to get people safe," he said.

At a press conference later that evening, Nashville Mayor John Cooper commended the police who risked their lives to save people from the blast.

"Let's spend a moment in celebration of the six uniformed Metro Police Officers who were at the scene at the time of the blast. These incredible heroes who ran to danger with uncertain outcomes ahead of them were responsible for so many injuries being saved," he said.

Cooper continued: "[The officers] took swift action and directed people away from danger to save lives, even at the time that their own lives would've been in peril. They are heroes, and I'm grateful for them."

Drake also said that had the six police not acted swiftly, there may have been more casualties from the explosion, rather than the three people who were hospitalized.

"These officers' acts of heroism is just tremendous," he said. "These officers didn't care about themselves. They didn't think about that. They cared about the citizens of Nashville. We'd be talking, not about the debris that we have here, but also maybe potential people."

According to local outlet WKRN, a man named David Malloy was out walking his dog when officers approached him and told him that he needed to evacuate. He said that while asking the police why he needed to get away, the explosion occurred. Neither he nor his dog were hurt.

"We were really fortunate that we didn't get hurt and of course myself and the officer and the other two officers like I said standing out there, the gentleman I was talking to, we were okay, but obviously scared the crap out of us," Malloy said.

A few other people who were nearby when the incident happened said that they were first awoken by gunshots and later left upon hearing the vehicle announce that it would detonate in a recorded message. One resident, Buck McCoy, told CNN that it was terrifying.

"It was like a movie," he said. "It really felt like the end of times."

Newsweek reached out to the Nashville Police Department and mayor's office for comment.

Nashville Explosion Police Line RV
Police close off an area damaged by an explosion on Christmas morning on December 25, 2020 in Nashville, Tennessee. Terry Wyatt/Getty