The February 2021 celebration has been cancelled due to Covid.
This Medal for Heroism recognizes outstanding bravery and self-sacrifice in the face of imminent danger, i.e., acts which involve great personal courage and risk to the recipient. It is intended primarily for acts by civilians not in uniform but does not exclude police, firemen, and SAR members. It is not intended to recognize acts that would have been covered by armed forces medals for valor. The medal may also be presented posthumously.
The recipient of this award for the year 2020 is Johnson County, Kansas Deputy Sheriff Mark Davis
Deputy Mark Davis, Johnson County Sheriff’s Department.
The evening of November 11, 2019, Deputy Mark Davis was had left work from the Johnson County Jail when he saw a car sitting on the nearby railroad track.
He stopped to investigate, before he got to the car Jim Young, a citizen, stopped his vehicle and immediately followed him to the car. The car was spinning its tires, it was stuck on the tracks. Deputy Davis went to the driver side window and Mr. Young went to the rear of the car; they tried to push it off the train tracks but could not.
A train began to appear on the tracks traveling toward them. Good Samaritan, Jim Young stated "I'm looking off to the right and seeing this headlight getting bigger and bigger and the horn is going”
Much of their action was captured on a video camera. As Sheriff Calvin Hayden watched the video he commented "When I first saw it, it scared me to death. I saw these two guys and I'm yelling at the screen, 'Get out of the way. Get out of the way.'"
Deputy Davis described his arrival at the scene as follows. "I run up to the driver and tell the driver, 'We have to go.' Well, the driver tells me, 'No,'"
After a struggle, the deputy pulled the man from the car and clear of the train just two seconds before the train hits the car.
The explanations by Deputy Davis of his actions was, "If you notice something is wrong, then you just step up and try to help somebody out and that's what we both did that day”.
Sheriff Hayden recognized both men for their courage.
"I'm proud of both of you guys. Thank you so much for everything," Hayden said.
Young says he now has deeper appreciation for first responders.
Mr. Young said, "They put their lives on the line. All I did was try to push the car off the tracks and do what I could. But Mark is the one that got the guy out of there”..
Davis is credited with saving the man twice Monday night. After rescuing him from the car, witnesses said the man nearly walked back into the train. Olathe police investigated the man's behavior.
Deputy Mark Davis is being presented the Sons of the American Revolution Medal of Heroism which “recognizes outstanding bravery and self-sacrifice in the face of imminent danger, i.e., acts which involve great personal courage and risk to the recipient.”
A report and video by Mr. Brain Johnson, of KMBC 9 News, may be seen on the following link.