Diane and Steve Spurling thought their neighborhood was unusually quiet on a beautiful night, but just a few minutes into an evening walk with their dog, a deafening scream came from their neighbor’s house.
Their neighbor emerged from her garage covered in blood. She frantically ran down the driveway, tripped and fell head first in front of Diane and Steve. Knowing their neighbor needed immediate help, the couple jumped into action as the woman’s husband emerged from the house. The husband tried to coax his wife to come back inside their house, but she screamed that he was trying to kill her and that he had a gun.
Steve and Diane, without thinking about their own safety, rushed to the woman’s aid. Steve blocked the violent husband from reaching his wife, as Diane steered her away. Moments after Steve dialed 9-1-1, the husband shot a gun toward the women. Steve and Diane’s dog went running. Diane fell to the ground and their neighbor narrowly dodged gunfire aimed at her.
Steve’s reaction was immediate. He quickly tackled the man, held him down and blocked him from firing again. Steve grabbed the gun and kept it from his reach. Within minutes, police arrived on scene, arrested the man and took their neighbor to the hospital.
“There was never a thought in our mind that we weren’t going to help her,” Diane said.
In reflecting on the evening, Steve believes that their neighbor wouldn’t be here today if he and Diane hadn’t been in the right place at the right time. Not only were her injuries shocking in their severity, but there was a gun involved.
“It happened so fast there wasn’t time to react. It was a surreal moment,” said Steve. “But I think anyone would have done the same thing.”
For taking serious and unselfish action during their casual evening stroll, Diane and Steve have been awarded the Citizen Recognition Award by their city. They have also been recognized by Congressman Randy Hultgren on the U.S. House of Representatives Floor for their heroic actions.
The Good Samaritan Award is presented to an outstanding individual(s) who courageously and selflessly responded to an unusual, significant or unexpected crisis.
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