Darryl A. Putz rescued Harold L. Minor, Jr., from burning, Ryan, Iowa, December 19, 2007. Minor, 46, was the driver of a tractor-trailer that crashed into two other rigs that had collided in heavy fog on a state highway. Injured and dazed, he was trapped in the wreckage of his truck tractor, which was leaking diesel fuel, as flames erupted there and entered the cab. Another motorist, Putz, 46, maintenance worker, had come across the first accident and witnessed the second. He climbed into the cab of Minor’s truck from its passenger side and dislodged and removed wreckage that blocked his access to Minor. As flames had spread to Minor’s clothing, Putz covered him with a curtain from the wreckage and then, after a struggle, succeeded in freeing Minor. Grasping him about the arms, Putz pulled Minor out of the truck and dragged him to safety moments before flames increased in the cab. Minor required extensive hospitalization for treatment of severe burns. Putz recovered from a slight burn to one hand.
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