Carnegie Hero Mickey Wilson posing with Rep. Brittany Pettersen of Colorado after she presented him with the Carnegie Medal of Heroism at a private ceremony held Nov. 10 with her office in Lakewood, Colorado.
Wilson was awarded the highest civilian honor for the Jan. 4, 2017, rescue of a man whose backpack was caught on a ski lift chair and tangled around the man’s neck as the ski lift continued downhill. The 30-year-old skier dangled by his neck and quickly lost consciousness.
Wilson had met the man earlier that day through mutual friends, and, after being alerted by screams, removed his skis and climbed a nearby tower. Wilson removed his gloves and a hand brace from a recent injury and climbed to the top of the tower where he then, without a harness, straddled the two-inch steel cable and pulled himself along the cable to a point above the man’s chair. He dropped to it and, failing to break off the strap with his foot, a nearby ski patroller threw a pocket knife to Wilson and he sliced the strap, causing the man to fall. The man was treated at a hospital for a broken rib and recovered without any long-term injuries. Wilson was uninjured from the incident.
“It was such an honor to have the opportunity to present him with the Carnegie Medal for his bravery,” Petersen said in a Facebook post about the presentation.
Petersen represents Colorado’s seventh district.