Man who saves 2-year-old from burning home dies from injuries

Calhoun County

MARSHALL, Mich. (WOOD) — A 38-year-old man has died from injuries sustained in an explosion and fire in Marshall that sent eight people to the hospital. 

The explosion happened on April 12. Dustin Boggess died Friday around 7 a.m., a family member told News 8.

His cousin, Ashley Johnson, said he had originally escaped the fire but went back into the home to rescue a 2-year-old. His family says they’re remembering him as a hero. 

“When the blast happened, everybody started running outside. And as soon as he realized when the mother of the little girl started screaming that her baby was still inside, without even giving it a second thought, he took off running into the house after the little girl,” Johnson said.

Johnson said Boggess died the way he lived: doing anything to save or help others.

“If he had a chance to do it all over again, knowing that he would still lose his life, he would do it in a heartbeat,” Johnson said. “That’s just who he was.”

On Monday, the Marshall Fire Department said a 27-year-old woman and 2-year-old girl remain in the hospital.

Investigators believe the explosion that tore the home near Clinton and Maple streets off its foundation was caused by a natural gas leak. The explosion remains under investigation. 

Boggess leaves behind three children of his own, along with countless other family members that will miss him dearly. 

“It’s really hard on all of us, but we are also so proud, so proud of him for going back into that house to save that little girl,” Johnson said.

Boggess’ family says they are planning a celebration of life for the 38-year-old and details are still forthcoming. 

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