Royal Humane Society
Instituted 1774 Registered Charity Number 231469
recognising the bravery of people
|Thomas Bangert (Canada)
Stanhope Medal 2004
summerís evening in July 2004 Thomas Bangert was driving his truck along
Highway 547 towards Southern Alberta. Suddenly another truck, carrying
fuel, was coming straight towards him. They hit head on and both vehicles
burst into flames.
40-year old Bangert managed to escape from his truck through the right-hand side of the shattered windscreen. The driver of the other truck was trapped in his burning cab.
Despite his state of shock,
Bangert ran over to the lorry and tried to break the side window to reach
him. But the flames were too fierce and too high. He then ran to the
passengerís side and broke the glass. The driver was able to crawl
through the truck towards Bangert, who pulled him clear. Both men
collapsed to the ground.
they staggered to their feet, they clung on to each other Ė to
extinguish their burning clothing. Seconds later, the fuel truck exploded.
rescued man suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns and
was airlifted to hospital; Bangert was also treated in hospital for cuts,
bruises and minor burns.
In September 2004 Thomas Bangert was awarded the Royal Canadian Humane Associationís Silver Medal for his remarkable bravery and selflessness in rescuing the other driver. He is seen (left) with Rudy Burghuys, the Association's President.
months later, Bangert
was chosen from an international field as the recipient of the Royal
Humane Societyís Stanhope Medal for the outstanding act of bravery of
Bangert later said of his actions: 'It just happened. I did it because I had to.'