State Trooper wins national heroism award for saving boy’s life
GREELEY, Colo. — On a warm November day in 2010, three boys skipped rocks on the ice in the pond at the Greeley FunPlex.
When a cell phone belonging to one of the boys slipped out onto the thin ice, then 10-year old Brennan Daviet tip-toed out to retrieve the device, but as fate would have it, the ice broke dropping the youngster into the icy water.
“I tried to swim to the other side, but the pond was too wide and water too cold,” said the budding Pop Warner quarterback. “I was floating for a while until my coat got soaked with water and pulled me under.”
While his buddies tried to use a skateboard to pull Brennan back, it proved to be too short, leaving the boy struggling right before their very eyes, trying to get on solid ice.
With all this going on, an off-duty Colorado State Trooper, who just happened to be in the park with his daughter, tossed his wife the car keys…telling her to call 911, and then jumped into the wake being left by Brennan.
“I fell through and began dog-paddling toward Brennan, but when he went under I just began tearing up the ice to get to him,” said Dan Haley. “I pulled him up by his pant leg and threw him on top of the little bit of ice that was still there.”
Those actions were enough to get the Trooper nominated for the Carnegie Hero Commission Award. The Commission was set up by Andrew Carnegie himself in 1904 when he said, “We live in a heroic age, not seldom are we thrilled by deeds of heroism where men or women are injured or lose their lives in attempting to preserve or rescue their fellow.”
Since 1904 more than 80,000 have been nominated for the hero award but only 9,000 medals have been issued. There is also a cash award for winners, which Trooper Haley says will be a great start for a college fund for his two children.
For Brennan, he loves the Broncos and now Peyton Manning as well, but when it comes to heroes, he says he’ll go with his angel in his pocket—Trooper Dan Haley!