SALT LAKE CITY — A Guardsman with the Utah Air National Guard was awarded the Utah Cross this week after coming to the immediate aid of a person injured in a traffic accident.
On June 2, 2020, Tech. Sgt. Erik Bornemeier was on his way to work as a medical technician with the 151st Air Refueling Wing when he came upon a head-on collision between a car and motorcycle.
Seeing the motorcyclist lying in the road, Bornemeier grabbed his medical kit to help the victim.
“The first thing I did was take a deep breath,” said Bornemeier. “As a medic, I am trained to triage and sort by priority and he was the highest priority.”
The victim was bleeding and had suffered compound fractures to their upper and lower limbs.
With active traffic nearby, Bornemeier put himself at risk while helping the victim.
“I fell straight into my medical training the Air Force has given me,” he said. “We are taught to always be serving, and at that time I was just doing my job.”
Learning the victim died later that day from their injuries, Bornemeier contacted the family to share their last message.
“It’s sacred to be able to receive those last words and it was an absolute honor to be able to share them with the victim’s family,” said Bornemeier.
The Utah Cross is the second highest state award that a Utah National Guard military member can receive, and is given to those who distinguish themselves with bravery above and beyond the call of duty.