Ball State University professor, wife recovering after being trapped in house fire

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MUNCIE,Ind. (June 3, 2015)- A Ball State University professor and his wife are recovering after being trapped in a house fire early Saturday morning.

Journalism professor, Tom Price and his wife Pam were rushed to the hospital for smoke inhalation. They were trapped in their bedroom due to heavy smoke and burning hot flames.

Tom is out of the hospital. Pam was upgraded from critical to fair condition and is quickly improving.

The fire started early Saturday morning in the garage. The couple woke up to their smoke alarms going off. Tom went downstairs to the garage to try to put the fire out with an extinguisher. The flames were too intense, so he ran back upstairs and told his wife to call 911. They weren't able to make it down the stairs to the front door.

Neighbor Nelson Rediger says the couple was trapped inside for at least 20 minutes.

"All of us just stood there dazed and devastated because you knew they were in there," Rediger said.

Firefighters say the couple's quick thinking saved their lives. Pam called 911 and described to dispatchers where the two were. They covered their bodies with wet sheets and put a towel in front of the bedroom door to keep the fire from spreading inside.

When firefighters got on scene, they pushed through siding on the outside of the bedroom and pulled the couple out. They were unconscious, but breathing.

"Someone said that they’re alive and I couldn’t believe it.  When you saw them wheeled out, it was like, they’re gone," said Rediger.

Tom Price told CBS4  in an e-mail of his wife:

"She is a wonderful woman who helped save my life."

Investigators are still looking into what caused the fire. The point of origin is likely the garage.

A fund has been created to help the family with expenses as they recover. If you would like to help, click here.

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