Carnegie Hero Commission member Arthur M. Scully and Carnegie Hero Kortnie Balls pose for a photo after Scully presented the Carnegie Medal to Balls in an Aug. 2, 2023, private ceremony held in Chubbuck, Idaho.
Balls, of Pocatello, Idaho, entered a burning mobile home on March 23, 2022, in Pocatello. Amid exploding oxygen tanks, dense, black smoke that made it nearly impossible to see, and spreading flames, she found the home’s 76-year-old occupant, who was badly burned. Despite the man outweighing her by more than 100 pounds, Balls pulled him to the front door, passing under flames burning above them. She got the man partially out of the house when another bystander stepped up to help Balls move him fully onto the porch. Balls inhaled smoke, but she recovered.
“Thank you and everyone on the board for everything you have done,” Balls said. “I am beyond grateful.”