National Guardsman awarded Utah Cross for efforts to save life of teen

Posted at 9:20 PM, Jan 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-10 23:20:16-05

SOUTHERN UTAH – FOX 13 viewers are certainly familiar with the floods that ripped through Hildale and Colorado City last September, and now a Utah National Guardsmen who responded to that disaster is being recognized for saving a life during an unrelated incident.

Sgt. Austin Miller of the Utah National Guard was honored with one of the state’s highest honors: The Utah Cross. Video courtesy of St. George News showed the award ceremony.

Miller is a member of the Bravo Battery of the 2nd Battalion of the 22nd Field Artillery, and his unit was assisting with search and recovery efforts following the fatal floods when another near-tragedy played out September 17.

“I saw the accident happen in my vehicle,” Miller said of that day.

A passenger vehicle became involved in a collision with a military vehicle.

“Three occupants, one of the occupants in the back was in pretty bad shape,” Miller said. “He was seizing and covered in blood. I noticed he wasn't breathing very well.”

The victim was a 14-year-old boy.

“You just do what the Army teaches you, you go through, [you check] your airways,” Miller said of his efforts to render aid to the injured teen.

“Sgt. Miller's actions, no doubt, contributed to saving this young man's life,” said Lt. Col. Caldwell of the Utah National Guard.

Miller seemed hesitant to accept a personal accolade, saying he would prefer to honor his unit.

“If they're going to give me the award, I'll accept it on behalf of Bravo Battery,” he said. “…We all just did our job, and it worked out."

After they helped the injured teen, Miller and his unit proceeded to Hildale to continue their original assignment.