Published Thursday, November 08, 2012
By SARAH FAY CAMPBELL
Coweta Deputy Jason Ross was honored by Gov. Nathan Deal Monday with the Governor’s Public Safety Award for heroism.
Ross was one of 18 honorees at the recognition event, held at the Georgia Public Safety Training Center in Forsyth.
Ross was honored for his actions on Sept. 10, 2011. Ross came upon a traffic crash on Lower Fayetteville Road. The Dodge Durango driven by Trish Evans was on fire, and Evans was trapped inside. Ross used his fire extinguisher to try to battle the flames, but it was not enough for the fireball.
Ross and a passerby then worked to free Evans from the vehicle. Ross received burns to his face and arms during the rescue.
The next day, Ross was serving as part of the honor guard for the county’s Sept. 11 commemoration.
Coweta Sheriff Mike Yeager recalled seeing Ross’ reddened face and neck at the ceremony and for a moment thinking Ross must have taken a quick beach vacation and gotten sunburned.
Ross and his fellow honorees were given medallions, and their names were added to the governor’s Public Safety Awards monument at the training center.
“I am honored to recognize our brave law enforcement officers and emergency responders who risk their lives every day to make our state a safer place,” said Deal. “Public safety is one of the most solemn obligations of state government, and I thank these heroes for their selfless commitment to Georgia citizens.”
The awards program was started in 1998 to recognize public safety officers who go above and beyond the call of duty to protect citizens and make significant contributions to the public safety profession at large.
It’s only the most recent commendation for Ross, who has been honored multiple times for his efforts that September day.
He was named Deputy of the Year by the Georgia Sheriff’s Association, and was named Georgia Officer of the Year for Valor by the Peace Officers Association of Georgia.
He was also honored by the Coweta County Commissioners and the Georgia Elks Association.
The entire rescue was captured on Ross’ dash cam. The raw video is posted on the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office’s Facebook page.
An edited and narrated version can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zw9rftvLYNg .