Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (8th Senate District) and Assemblyman David G. McDonough (19th Assembly District) today presented the New York State Senate Liberty Medal to Colleen Kiesow, a school aide and crossing guard at Park Avenue Elementary School, for her heroic efforts in rescuing a North Merrick family from their burning home. Senator Fuschillo presented the award to Ms. Kiesow in front of Bradley and Brian Kelly, whose family lived in the home, and their classmates.
"Without regard for her own safety, Ms. Kiesow ran into a burning home to make sure that everyone who was inside got out safely. Her extraordinary selflessness, bravery, and courage helped to save several lives and avert a tragedy," said Senator Fuschillo. "Our entire community is very proud of this local hero, who is truly worthy of this prestigious honor."
On the afternoon of January 25th, Ms. Kiesow was working at Park Avenue Elementary School when she was approached by Bradley Kelly, who said that he could see the second floor of his nearby home on fire and asked for help. She immediately called 911 and ran into to the home to alert the family members who were inside. She made multiple trips into the home, at times being forced to overcome intense smoke, and managed to help everyone inside the home escape safely.
Created in 2000, the New York State Senate Liberty Medal is one of the highest civilian honors that a New Yorker can receive. The award is given to individuals who have merited special commendation for exceptional, heroic, or humanitarian acts and achievements on behalf of their fellow New Yorkers. This is only the tenth time that Senator Fuschillo has awarded an individual with this prestigious honor.
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