Off-duty deputy breaks away from golf tournament to put out house fire

An off duty Brevard County Sheriff's deputy playing in a weekend golf tournament is being credited with saving a Viera home from fire damage while he was playing in a golf tournament at Baytree National Golf Links.

"That just doesn't seem right" recalled Deputy Vinnie Marino when he saw smoke coming from a home several hundred yards away in the distance. 

The deputy says he was getting ready to tee off at the 18th hole when the smoke turned thick and black as it continued to rise from the house on Arundel Way.

He says he and his golf partner jumped in their golf cart to get a closer look and discovered a pool pump in the rear of the house was on fire and growing larger. 

"I couldn't believe the flames" said Marino. "And it was catching onto the wires on the wall."

With the flames getting higher, Deputy Marino, who is a flight officer with the Sheriff's Aviation unit, says he told his golf partner to knock on the front door while he grabbed a nearby garden hose.

"Not being a fireman, I just immediately threw water on it" the deputy said. "Just to stop it from going into the attic area."

The off duty deputy says his plan worked. He put out the burning pool pump with the hose, and then called the fire department. Deputy Marino says the homeowner was in the shower at the time and didn't know about the fire, but eventually she saw the commotion and came outside and thanked him for taking quick action.

Brevard County Fire Rescue says there was about $2,000 of damage to the home, but that's far less than what it could have been had the fire spread. Sheriff Wayne Ivey publicly thanked and praised his deputy's actions on the Sheriff's Facebook page.