Carnegie Medal Presentation to Judy Arroyo

Long Beach City Manager Daniel Creighton, right, presented police officer Judy Arroyo with the Carnegie Medal for Heroism at a June 4 private ceremony held at the City of Long Beach police department. Also pictured behind Arroyo is City Council member Michael Reinhart. 

Arroyo was awarded the Carnegie Medal in December for saving the life of a man from burning inside of his home in Long Beach, New York, on Feb. 19, 2023.

A fire broke out on the rear deck of the 65-year-old man’s two-story home while he was asleep in his bedroom. He was awakened and searched the house for his son and a tenant that lived with them. A passerby flagged down on-duty police officer Judy Arroyo, 51. Flames had completely consumed the rear portion of the home as Arroyo approached. She entered through the unlocked front door to see flames burning on the kitchen ceiling. She located the man, gripped his arm, and forcefully ushered him outside. After hearing that others may be inside the home, Arroyo returned to the house, where flames had overtaken the kitchen. Through black smoke, Arroyo climbed a few stairs toward the second floor when she felt a burst of heat. She suffered burns to her face and both hands. She escaped back through the front door as the fire continued to spread. The son and tenant were later located outside the home. The man suffered no burns and declined to go to a hospital. Arroyo was treated at a hospital and later at a burn center. She mostly recovered from her burns in about three weeks.

The city of Long Beach posted on Facebook to show their appreciation and pride for Arroyo’s heroic actions. 

“Sgt. Arroyo is a profile in courage and we are grateful for her bravery, selflessness, and service to Long Beach,” it stated. “Thank you, Sgt. Arroyo, and congratulations on this prestigious honor.”