Vamos Mandy :)
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Looking for Andy's forehand with Sarah and Re...
Re: Andy the "Hero"
his report finally posted at AR.com
Andy Recounts the Tragedy in Rome.
As many of you know, based on several articles posted to the site, Andy spoke to his Mom, Blanche, during the fire incident to help guide him through. The other person who Andy called from the terrace was Ken Meyerson, his agent as he wanted him to know what was going on and that he was ok.
Shortly after the madness ended, Andy spoke with his publicist and sister-in-law, Ginger. Ginger had this conversation recorded so that Andy would have to only go through this once.
Therefore, please find below Andy's recount of his experience early Saturday morning in Rome. Please keep in mind that three people passed away in this tragedy, and while Andy's actions were heroic, lives were lost, and therefore, it is a sensitive issue.
GR: Talk me through this
AR - I woke up to go to the bathroom and notice the smell of smoke. At first it smelled like electrical. I thought at first something was wrong with a converter. As I got closer to bathroom and door I could really smell smoke and when I put my hand on the door it was warm. I open the door and a black cloud of smoke billowed into my room, so I quickly shut the door.
GR: What were you thinking?
AR - Ok lets figure this thing out.
GR: You were calm?
AR- I kept my head. And knew to not start panicking.
AR - I went out, I had a big wrap around porch on the 6th floor and there were people on the roof of the 7th floor. 7th floor was completely under smoke - that was were two people died of smoke inhalation. I was like ok, you guys should probably get down to this porch area, the smokes going to be bad but you guys have no where to go there. So, they were jumping and I was literally catching them, like six or seven people.
GR: Did they speak English or were they Italian.
AR - They were American tourists. One of them was Sjeng Schalken and his wife. If those people had stayed they probably would have suffered from smoke inhalation.
GR: So how long were you on your balcony?
AR - 45min to an 1hour?
GR: How long was it before you saw rescue trucks?
AR - We saw the trucks but the ladders were not coming near us.
GR : Were Brad and Doug or Grant with you.
AR- No, Brad and Doug were on another floor.
GR : So they were out and did they know where you were?
AR - No they didn't know where I was.
GR: So you were by yourself?
AR - Until Sjeng Schalken and his wife the 4 older Americans and 1 Italian dude. And I caught all of them. It was probably like a ten-foot drop from the 7th floor to the 6th floor.
AR - And they just like jump off and I caught all of them
GR: Was your adrenaline going?
AR - They were like 140-160 pound women and I was catching them like they were a basketball.
GR: Are you hurt?
AR- On my wrist I have some scratches and my back is stiff, I guess from catching people. I didn't have shoes on during the whole thing so my feet are cut up.
GR: It's so surreal on this end.
AR - I'm ok. I think I'm still in shock. Right now, I am trying to focus on preparing for my match, although at a time like this tennis feels trivial. Last nights tragedy seems surreal. My heart goes out to the families of the deceased. We were very fortunate that none of players or families were harmed.