Portland firefighter injured in natural gas explosion honored at - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland firefighter injured in natural gas explosion honored at Beaverton football game

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BEAVERTON, OR (KPTV) -

The Portland firefighter who evacuated dozens of people minutes before a natural gas explosion two weeks ago in northwest Portland was honored Friday night.

Beaverton High School thanked Portland Fire Lt. Peter St. John for his bravery.

St. John is a 2003 graduate of Beaverton High School. 

At half time friends, family and former teammates gathered around him at midfield.

“Our motto this year is ‘I got your back,’” former teammate and assistant coach Jimmy Joyce said. “Peter having his brothers back as a firefighter is a prime example of that.”

Two weeks ago, St. John was evacuating people from businesses and their homes at Northwest 23rd and Glisan in Portland. In the moments after, one of the buildings exploded throwing St. John and breaking his legs.

“Mine and Peter’s quarterback in High School text me and he goes 'did you hear about the explosion,'” Joyce said. "I go 'yeah it’s crazy' and he goes 'did you hear about Peter' and immediately sent chills down through my spine.”

During the halftime ceremony the PA announcer told the crowd of St. John’s story, saying in part: “While he may not consider himself a hero, we at Beaverton High School think he is the true embodiment of what a hero is."

St. John faces a long road in his recovery, but said getting out and being at Friday nights playoff game was enjoyable. 

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