A North Texas father is a finalist for a national award after saving the life of a driver who was having a seizure on Interstate 35E.
Bryan Jacobs, of Justin, is among 10 finalists from around the country for the Citizen Service Above Self Honors, which recognizes people for performing "a single act of extraordinary heroism."
“My wife called me, and she sounded about as excited as she did when she found out she was pregnant the first time,” said Jacobs about learning of his nomination.
Jacobs spotted a woman having a seizure behind the wheel of her car when he was driving to McDonald's on his lunch break on Jan. 11. Andrea Sumner, 25, was driving 40 mph when she lost consciousness and was weaving in and out of traffic.
“The first time she hit the wall, I saw her head going back and forth and knew she was knocked out, asleep or something,” said Jacobs.
In busy afternoon traffic, Jacobs pulled his truck in front of Sumner’s, forcing her to a stop.
“God chooses you to do certain things at certain times, and I think that’s what lead me to do what I did,” he said.
At the hospital, doctors discovered a tumor larger than a golf ball on Sumner’s brain. She had emergency brain surgery and spent close to a week in intensive care.
“It probably took four weeks for me to actually understand what I went through,” she said.
While her memory has been slow to come back, doctors expect her to make a full recovery.
“I’m glad to know she and her husband, who have only been married a year, get to bug each other for another 70 to 80 years,” Jacobs said.
Twenty people have been finalists for the Citizen Service Above Self Honors. A panel of Medal of Honor recipients will select the three recipients.
The recipients will be announced March 22 and honored at a ceremony March 25 at Arlington Cemetery in Washington, D.C.
The Citizen Service Above Self Honors are given by the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded by the Congressional Medal of Honor Society. The honor society consists of living Medal of Honor recipients.
The Medal of Honor is the nation's highest military award and is awarded by Congress for risk of life in combat beyond the call of duty.