Florida man who saved woman among 22 honored with Carnegie Hero medals; he wins for 2nd time

A Florida man who saved a woman from a burning sport utility vehicle is being honored for his heroism with his second medal from the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission, only the fifth time in 110 years someone has won twice.

Charles T. Carbonell Sr., of Tampa, is among 22 people to be honored on Wednesday with medals and cash awards. Carnegie officials said Carbonell saved a Florida woman from the burning SUV in 2011.

After an accident, Denise C. Guzman's SUV came to rest upside down in a stretch of wetland and caught fire. Carbonell, a furniture restorer, witnessed the accident and ran to the burning vehicle. He pulled Guzman from it and carried her back to the highway.

Carbonell also won a medal in 2007 for rescuing a Tampa police officer who was being assaulted by a man he was trying to arrest.

The other 21 winners were from Alberta, Arkansas, British Columbia, California, Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee and Texas. Four of them died while trying to save people from burning, drowning or assault.

The Carnegie Hero awards are named for Pittsburgh industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, who was inspired by stories of heroism during a coal mine disaster that killed 181 people, including a miner and an engineer who died trying to rescue others.

The commission investigates stories of heroism and awards medals and cash grants several times a year. It has given away more than $36 million to nearly 10,000 awardees or their families since its inception in 1904.