Jameson Bartscher and Todd D. Clausen

At a South Dakota Highway Patrol ceremony, Capt. Rob Weinmeister presented Jameson Bartscher and Todd Clausen with Life Saving Awards. The family along with members of Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribe also presented them with Star Quilts for their heroic actions. Photo courtesy of the South Dakota Highway Patrol.
Jameson Bartscher with Capt. Robert Weinmeister of the South Dakota Highway Patrol. Photo courtesy of the South Dakota Highway Patrol.
Todd D. Clausen holding Cassidy J. Wanna, the 2-month-old baby he helped to remove from a burning vehicle. Photo courtesy of the South Dakota Highway Patrol.

Jameson Bartscher and Todd D. Clausen rescued Cassidy J. Wanna from burning, and Bartscher rescued Gabrielle G. Wanna and Rebecca L. Stoughton, Summit, South Dakota, June 9, 2015.

Cassidy, 2 months, and his great-aunt, Stoughton, 53, were passengers in a sport utility vehicle that their relative, Wanna, 23, was driving on an interstate highway when fire broke out at the rear of the vehicle. As the car lost power, Wanna pulled onto the shoulder, and flames rose several feet above the rear of the vehicle and spread toward its front. Thick smoke filled the car.

Bartscher, 30, public works employee of Aberdeen, South Dakota, and Clausen, 44, sales representative of Sioux City, Iowa, both motorists, stopped at the scene. Using a fire extinguisher from his work truck, Bartscher pushed the flames away from the passenger side of the vehicle until the extinguisher was emptied. He then used the bottom of the extinguisher to strike the window of the rear, passenger-side door, breaking it.

Together, Bartscher and Clausen freed Cassidy through the window, with Clausen unbuckling the baby from his car seat and carrying him away. Bartscher then opened that door, partially entered the vehicle, and, grasping Wanna, pulled her to safety. Re-entering, he aided Stoughton to escape after freeing her from an entanglement.

Fire quickly engulfed the vehicle, destroying it.

Cassidy, Wanna, and Stoughton required hospital treatment for burns and smoke inhalation. Bartscher recovered from minor cuts to his arms, and Clausen from minor burns.

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Carnegie Medal presentation to Todd D. Clausen

Carnegie Hero Todd D. Clausen, center, with his family, from left, wife Ivy, son Samuel, daughter Laryn, and father Larry.
Sioux City, Iowa, Mayor Bob Scott and Carnegie Hero Todd D. Clausen.

On behalf of the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission, Sioux City, Iowa, Mayor Bob Scott presented #CarnegieHero Todd D. Clausen with the Carnegie Medal at the city’s January 24, 2017 council meeting. Clausen and co-rescuer, #CarnegieHero Jameson Bartscher, rescued a total of three people from a burning vehicle.

“They certainly did save some lives he actually was a hero and the Carnegie award is like the highest civilian honor you can get so that’s a huge huge deal,” Scott told the Siouxland News.


Carnegie Medal presentation to Jameson Bartscher

Jameson Bartscher and Todd D. Clausen

Carnegie Hero Jameson Bartscher was presented the Carnegie Medal at a Aberdeen, S.D., City Council meeting in January. Bartscher, an Aberdeen city public works employee, rescued three people, including a 2-month-old baby, from a burning car in June, 2015.