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Duluth Teen Recognized with Citizen Award

Julie Kruse
May 15, 2017 07:25 PM

When it comes to an emergency situation, how do you react? It can be easy to panic when faced with danger, but staying calm is often key to maintaining control. One Duluth teenager knows that firsthand.

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On Monday, the Duluth Fire Department gave the "Citizen Life Saver Award" to Ruth Kristensen.

Last August, Ruth was visiting her neighbor when she quickly noticed something was wrong. Ruth says she called 911. When paramedics arrived, they said the patient seemed normal; however, Ruth insisted they keep checking.

"I wanted to make sure they didn't think I was lying or pulling a prank on them," Kristensen explained. "They did take me seriously even though I was pretty young, and they stayed with her until they figured out what I was talking about. I wanted to make sure she was doing alright, and I wasn't going to go anywhere until I made sure she was okay."

Turns out, the neighbor did have a medical condition, which could have gone untreated had it not been for Ruth. Duluth Fire Capt. Mike Consie nominated Ruth for the award. He was on the scene that day and says her actions showed bravery and courage.

"When you find someone who is 16 years old standing up to people she never met before with lights and sirens and a lot of people coming into the scene, and for her to stand there and say, 'This isn't right. Something is wrong,' I think is incredible." Capt. Consie said. "She had the compassion to stay there with her neighbor, and those are values we hold dear in our organization. We wanted to recognize her."

Ruth just graduated high school and is off to UMD in the fall. She hopes to become a special education teacher.


Credits

Julie Kruse

Copyright 2017 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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