Matthew Schons of Tracy, Minn. has been awarded a Carnegie Medal for Civilian Heroism for risking his own life to rescue a 2-month-old baby girl from a burning house in September 2012.
Sonja Timmons and her 3 children were critically injured when their home on Elm Street exploded the morning of Sept. 15. Witnesses said the explosion blew the chimney off the roof and sent glass flying across the street.
Schons, 25, heard the explosion and ran toward the house. Learning that 2-month-old Jadyn Timmons was still inside, he entered the living room through the front door and fought intense heat and dense smoke to reach the child.
ABSTRACT FROM CARNEGIE HEROES PROFILE
"Despite flames burning throughout the room, Schons moved along its perimeter to search for Jadyn, not knowing her location. Passing within inches of the flames in deteriorating conditions, he found the crib in the far corner of the room. Schons picked Jadyn up and, cradling her in one arm while shielding her face with the other, fled outside to safety."
Timmons and her daughters – Jadyn, MKena and Kaylee – were hospitalized with serious burns, but survived and recovered.
2014 CARNEGIE HEROES
- Lincoln LeMere, 35, of Pflugerville, Texas, and Archie Jordy, 42, of Round Rock, Texas, subdued a shoplifter who fatally shot a police officer in Austin, Texas in April 2012.
- Kyle Robert Hardman, 55, of Barbourville, Ky., died attempting to save several people from drowning in Sauget, Ill., in June 2012.
- Jarvise Shelton, 39, of Villa Ridge, Ill., helped rescue the same people from drowning in Sauget, Ill., in June 2012.
- Keith Smedema, 53, of Indianapolis, saved a woman from drowning in the White River in Indianapolis in February 2013.
- Keno Goode Sr., 62, of San Carlos, Ariz., saved a young girl from drowning after she was stranded by rising waters from heavy rain in Sevenmile, Wash., in September 2012.
- Christopher Allen Staley, 22, of Newburg, Md., died trying to save a friend from drowning in the Wicomico River in Mechanicsville, Md., in August 2011.
- Justin Tak Chan, 34 of Burnaby, B.C., died trying to save a 31-year-old woman from drowning in the Cheakamus River in Whistler, B.C., in August 2011.
- Michael Jerome Cade, 45, of Enid, Okla., rescued a woman from being assaulted by an armed man, who shot Cade in the process, while Henry McHenry, 39, of Houston, Texas, rescued Cade from the armed suspect in Houston, in May 2013.
- Steven L. Rogge, 40, of Farmington, N.M., rescued a 12-year-old boy from drowning in the Animas River in Farmington in April 2013.
- Edward J. Garglinghouse, 44, of Boynton Beach, Fla., died helping rescue two people from drowning in the surf at Palm Beach Shores, Fla., in February 2013.
- Drew James Loftus, 22, of San Diego, and Austin Jeffrey Mann, 23, of Carlsbad, Calif., saved a woman from being struck by traffic after her car overturned on an interstate highway in Encinitas, Calif., in March 2013.
- Brian Patrick Joyce, 21, and his brother, Steven Edward Joyce Jr., 23, of Littleton, Mass. saved a couple from burning when their vehicle crashed in Newton, Mass., in July 2012.
- Kurt T. Buchler, 44, of Sanatoga, Pa., saved a woman from being attacked by three dogs, during which he was attacked himself, in Pottstown, Pa., in March 2013.
- Virginia R. Grogan, 54, of Gloucester, Va., died trying to save her three young grandsons when their home caught fire in Gloucester, in January 2013.
- Matthew P. Schons, 25, of Tracy, Minn., rescued an infant girl from his neighbor's burning house in September 2012.
- Christopher Jon Ihle, 38, of Ames, Iowa, saved an elderly couple from being struck by a train when their car stalled on a railroad crossing in Ames in July 2013.
- Roger Costa, 39, of Tustin, Calif., was scarred when he tried to rescue a woman from a burning apartment in November 2012.
- Jason Austin Cole, 16, of Lonoke, Ark., saved a boy when he fell through the ice in a culvert in Spirit Lake, Idaho, in January 2013.