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Marcio Gomes led his family to safety

Hero dad battles through flames to get pregnant wife and youngest daughter out of burning London tower block from 21st floor before battling smoke-filled stairs to rescue oldest daughter who collapsed

Marcio Gomes led his family to safety after being told emergency services were unable to make it up to the 21st floor

A HERO dad got his pregnant wife and youngest daughter down the tower block’s smoke-filled stairs — then went back up into the choking blackness for his older girl.

 

The fumes were so thick in the pitch-dark stairwell that Marcio Gomes, 38, was unaware 12-year-old Luana had collapsed halfway down.

 

Marcio Gomes led his family to safety

Sun NewsMedia

 

Only her little sister Megan, ten, was with him and wife Andreia, 37, when the family made it to the lower levels of the blazing 24-storey tower block.

 

They had stumbled over bodies as they desperately battled their way almost from the top.

Distraught Marcio, a teaching inspector for Ofsted, immediately headed back into the fume-filled hell to save her.

 

He said as he was last night hailed a hero: “I saw we had lost my daughter.

“So I didn’t leave the block. I went back up to try and get her.

 

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“We got separated from our daughter because we couldn’t see anything.

“She was halfway down. She had stopped. She couldn’t move any more and had fallen unconscious.”

 

The desperate dad shouted for help from firemen, who had yet to make it that far up the stairs.

 

Crews were so disorientated they had no idea where they were in the building.

Marcio said: “I had to tell them exactly where they were. They went up and carried her down.”

Luana survived by a miracle.

 

Last night the entire family was in hospital being treated for smoke-inhalation.

Mum Andreia, who is seven months pregnant, was put into a medically-induced coma to help her and the unborn child recover.

 

What we know so far:

Her husband told of how they had to feel their way down the stairs. They realised they were stumbling over bodies.

The family, whose flat was on the 21st floor, had not suspected anything was wrong until 2.30am — an hour after the blaze began.

Marcio heard what he described as a “commotion”.

Terrified neighbours had spotted flames.

Two of them sought sanctuary at his flat because it seemed to be further away from the blaze.

The dad phoned the fire brigade.

He told how he was instructed to stay put — which he and his family did for two hours as he made further calls for help.

 

The emergency operator explained that fire crews were unable to make it up to the 21st floor.

 

Marcio said: “We were told it was being contained. I phoned them at various times and said my wife was pregnant and that we couldn’t go down — there was too much smoke.

 

“But they wouldn’t send anyone up. By 4.30am the flames had roared up the side of the block. Fire engulfed the whole building.”

 

When he saw the blaze reaching his windows he realised he had to act to save his family.

 

He went on: “There was too much smoke. You couldn’t see anything.

“We didn’t see people, we just felt people. We were just climbing over bodies.”

Marcio had taken the precaution of phoning the fire brigade yet again on his mobile as the family left their flat.

He remained on the line to the operator all the way down.

The dad recalled: “She said, ‘Stay on the phone’. So I did as we went down the stairs.”

The family’s relief when they made it to safety was shattered when they realised Luana was no longer with them.

 

Marcio, who was barely able to speak in hospital because his throat was so damaged by fumes, said thankfully: “She got out.”

 

Friends of the hero and his family rushed to set up a GoFundMe page for them.

Last night donations had topped £13,000.

 

A message read: “Our friends Andreia and Marcio have suffered a devastating event, with their home being destroyed by fire.

 

“Luckily our hero Marcio managed to get them all out. They have lost everything.

“We can all help in a small way to rebuild their lives.”

 

Pal Lauren Rees declared bluntly: “Marcio is a hero.”

The dad admitted in hospital that it was “mayhem” as he, his family and neighbours battled their way through the smoke.

 

Marcio said: “When we were going down the stairs and I was on the phone to the fire brigade they said, ‘Keep going down, keep using your voice’.”

 

He said he never heard any alarms.

Asked about fire safety in the block, he raged: “It was a shambles.”