RENO - A Nevada Highway Patrol trooper who saved an injured man from freezing to death and two fellow troopers were honored Friday for acts of valor.
Trooper Michael S. Simon was patrolling U.S. Highway 6 near Ely last December when he noticed skid marks on the side of the road where he hadn't remembered them before.
''He followed the path off the road and found a car upside down at the bottom of the canyon,'' trooper Jeff Bowers said.
''He hikes down there and there was an elderly man hanging from his seat belt. He coordinated the medical evacuation and saved the man's life,'' Bowers said.
Richard Bunty, 71, of Meridian, Idaho, had been stranded in the overturned car for about six hours when Simon discovered him, Patrol Lt. Thomas Johnson said. The temperature was 7 degrees at the time.
''He was about frozen to death,'' Thomas said Friday from Elko.
Simon received a citation along with Sgt. Tony Almaraz for acts above and beyond the call of duty.
Almaraz was instrumental in talking a potential suicide victim out of going through with the act in February, Bowers said.
Trooper Scott Swain received the Medal of Valor and a Purple Heart. He was attacked by a suspect and shot in the ankle while making a routine traffic stop in Reno last August.
Swain, a 14-year NHP veteran, was riding a Highway Patrol motorcycle when he stopped a red Nissan Pulsar near the corner of Sixth Street and Evans. Jorge Trujillo, 29, has been charged with attempted murder.
The shooting was the first of an NHP trooper on duty in northern Nevada since Carlos Borland was killed during a traffic stop on Interstate 80 near Lovelock in 1993.
Michael Sonner, a North Carolina jail escapee, was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death in that case. He remains on death row in Ely State Prison.