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News Release

April 24, 2003
CONTACT: Andrew Bennett
Fire Marshal

Local residents awarded Carnegie medal
Award given by the Carnege Hero Fund for extraordinary heroism

The Carnegie Hero Fund Commission has awarded the Carnegie Medal to Moreno Valley resident Caejar A. Cox and Perris resident Ross G. Guy. The bronze medal is given to persons who risk their lives to an extraordinary degree while saving or attempting to save the lives of others. In addition to the medal, the awardees will receive a grant of $3,500 from the Hero Fund Commission.

“These men are very deserving of this recognition,” said Moreno Valley Fire Marshal Andrew Bennett, who submitted the men’s names for consideration. “They went over and above to save a life. We are proud they are part of our community,” he said.

Cox and Guy helped to save Edgar T. DeLeon from burning in a Moreno Valley car accident on January 10, 2002. DeLeon, 20, was unconscious in the driver’s seat of his car after a highway accident in which the car collided with another. The vehicles came to rest in close proximity to each other, and flames that broke out on the other car spread to DeLeon’s. Guy, 52, and Cox, 33, drove upon the scene and approached the driver’s side of DeLeon’s car, where they attempted to open the driver’s door, as did another man. After the other man broke out the window to that door, the men found that DeLeon was restrained by his safety belt. Flames by then had entered the rear interior of the car, and Guy, Cox and the other man were forced back by the heat and smoke. Returning to the car, they started to remove DeLeon through the driver’s door but found that his foot was trapped. After Cox partially entered the car and freed the foot, he and the two other men removed DeLeon from the car and carried him to safety. The cars were destroyed in the accident and fire. DeLeon was hospitalized for treatment of his injuries, and Guy and Cox sustained minor cuts on their hands and arms, from which they recovered.

Guy and Cox were previously honored by the City of Moreno Valley with the Chelbana Memorial Community Service Award, which recognizes citizens for extraordinary acts of heroism or community service.

This is not the first time a Moreno Valley resident has been presented with the Carnegie Award. The award was presented, posthumously, to George Chenier Jr., who, in September 2000, lost his life after rescuing a child from a burning vehicle.

Industrialist-philanthropist Andrew Carnegie established the Hero Fund Commission in 1904. In its 99-year history, the fund has donated more than $26 million in one-time grants, scholarship aid, death benefits, and continuing assistance.