BOISE - Two firefighters were honored in Boise today for performing with exceptional courage and bravery to save lives.
Lt. John Ward of Kootenai County Fire and Rescue and firefighter Sean Allen of Idaho Falls received the Idaho Medal of Honor during a ceremony at the Idaho Fallen Firefighters Memorial.
Allen was recognized for helping rescue a man who had crashed and overturned his car in an irrigation canal on Sept. 25, 2015. He climbed into the submerged car and cut the man out before pulling him to the canal bank and starting first aid.
Ward was recognized for a rescue he performed on April 13, 2015 while he was off duty, at home in Rathdrum. He and his wife had just sat down to watch the news after a bike ride when he realized his neighbor's house was on fire.
Most of the people in the house had gotten out, but a woman bound to a wheelchair was still inside. Ward crawled inside - without any of his usual protective gear - and saved the woman and two pets.
"We train to do that every day ... stepping off the truck, all our personal protective equipment on and in place - all the equipment that we need to do it,” said Ward. “You never really expect to be doing it at your neighbor’s house on your day off."
The Idaho Medal of Honor is the state's highest honor for firefighters, law enforcement and emergency medical providers.
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