Minot airman awarded for saving man

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Senior Airman Jose Rafael Jacuinde Rios | Courtesy: Minot Air Force Base

Jose Rafael Jacuinde Rios, a senior airman at Minot Air Force Base, was awarded the American Red Cross Certificate of Merit at a ceremony on Friday.

In April, Jacuinde Rios found a man lying on the side of the road with a severe head injury and saved his life.

Jacuinde Rios was running errands with his wife and children when he saw a young man laying on the side of the road who appeared to be incapacitated. He pulled over to see if the man needed help when he saw he was in a pool of blood. He immediately called for medical assistance, rolled the man on his side, assessed him for more injuries and waited for a medical team to arrive.

“The Certificate of Merit is the highest award given by the Red Cross to individuals who save or sustain a life using skills learned in a Red Cross Training Services course,” said Rob Stotz, Executive Director for the American Red Cross serving Western North Dakota. “We’re extremely proud and honored to present this award to SrA Jacuinde Rios, whose actions exemplify our mission to help people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies.”

“During off duty hours, he has proven that he will go above and beyond his line of duty and out of his way to assist a member of the community in their time of need. Senior Airman Jacuinde Rios is the epitome of what a true American Airman is,” said Senior Airman Carmen C.D. San Diego, who was a witness.

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