Indiana State Trooper Honored for a Life Saving act

indiana state police trooper chris kinseyThe Indiana State trooper who pulled a man from a car that sank in a Steuben County lake last July, saving his life, was honored by the police force Friday. Trooper Chris Kinsey received the state’s third-highest award, the Bronze Star Award, at the Indiana State Police Awards Ceremony in Indianapolis. The Bronze Star Award is reserved for those who perform at a “level clearly beyond exceptions” with a focus on personal “bravery and self-sacrifice.” Joshua Dilley is alive today as a direct result of that. On July 23, then-22-year-old Dilley was heading southbound on Golden Lake Road near County Road 325 West in Steuben County when, for an unknown reason, he drove off the road and crashed into Big Bower Lake. Kinsey was on duty minutes away from lake when the call came in that a man was trapped in his car in the water. At the scene, Kinsey pulled off his vest and utility belt and grabbed a tool used to bust windows, then jumped in the water. The trooper said a witness was already by the car, about 20 feet off the shore and completely submerged. Kinsey said the witness saw the man as the car started to go under the water. Under water, Kinsey said the car’s doors wouldn’t open, but he was able to use the tool on the back window. “With several good hits I finally broke through,” he said. After feeling around the murky waters, Kinsey and Steuben County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Noll were eventually able to recover Dilley and pull him from the car – and to safety. Beyond expectations. Bravery. Self-sacrifice. “It’s very humbling,” said Kinsey. “I did not expect to receive this. I was just out trying to do the right thing.” Kinsey was one of seven state police troopers from the Fort Wayne area who received awards at Friday’s ceremony. Fifty-five officers and individuals received awards in all.

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