Purple Heart Veteran Reportedly Saves Granddaughter's Life in Deadly House Explosion


The love a grandfather has for his grandchild knows no bounds. Don Osteen loved his granddaughter, Paetyn, and had the chance to prove that when the house they were in exploded.

Don’s son Brendon told KFOR that his daughter and father were inseparable. They were in their home in Maud, Oklahoma, when Don lit a candle and a gas explosion occurred.

While Don was already an American hero, having earned a Purple Heart and being an Army vet, he proved on that fateful day that he was also his family’s hero.

Despite being terribly burned himself, he scooped up his 3-year-old granddaughter and ran out of the house and toward the street, where people could help them.

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“He wasn’t worried about himself at all,” Brendon told KFOR. “I’ll leave it at that, but ‘save her’ was the message he was trying to get across and he did exactly that.”

“He just got out of the house and headed straight to where he knew help was. He tried to get in his truck and his keys were melted to him. His phone was exploded in his pocket.”

Brendon also said there must have been some supernatural help that day, as the driveway his father ran up was very steep.

“Just thought about the steep grade of that driveway and just knew and kind of came to the conclusion that they were carried up that driveway, you know,” he explained. “Something carried them up that driveway.”

The two were rushed to the hospital, where they began receiving treatment for their extensive burns. According to a Facebook Fundraiser, Don suffered broken ribs, a collapsed lung and burns over 70 percent of his body, while Paetyn was burned across 30 percent of her body.

“Thank you everyone for your constant reminders and tokens of support,” Brendon posted on Saturday.

“We are doing well in the ICU and PICU. Just long days and nights to start the healing process. Ashtin Paige Osteen and myself are upstairs taking turns sleeping and being with Paetyn and my mom Anita Osteen and her sister Sherry Ryals are down stairs with my dad Don Osteen.”

A few days of struggling to heal followed, after which Paetyn saw improvement — but sadly, Don did not.

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“Unfortunately my dad Don O’Steen passed away this afternoon around 1pm,” Brendon posted on Monday. “He was surrounded by a large group of his favorite people for his last 5 days. He knew that he did his job by saving the life of his Boo Boo Chicken.”

“He loved my daughter beyond unconditionally. And he gave it all for her to live. He was a great God fearing man who impacted so many people. And he will be missed dearly.”

“My dad was a very Christian man,” Brendon continued. “He believed he should try his best to live his life to the standard of Jesus Christ and that was his first obligation every day that he woke up. He lived to be like Christ, and he gave his life in sacrifice of my daughters Like Christ. He was happy on his way to heaven and I hope that brings all of you who knew him and loved him personally to peace with his passing.”

“He was a man set in his faith and he knew where he was going and once he knew he did his job he knew to relax and go home you know,” Brendon told KFOR.

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking