David Adams heard a gunshot and rushed into his neighbor’s apartment.
The Air Force sergeant found a man who had shot himself in the head May 11 in Airway Heights. A shotgun lay next to him.
Adams used an abdominal compression technique he learned watching the TV show “Rescue 911” to help the man start breathing before medics arrived.
“I couldn’t use standard mouthto-mouth or mouth-to-nose because there was none of that there,” he said. “It was that traumatic.”
Adams, who also saved a woman’s life in 1993 by performing CPR, was among 32 individuals and organizations that received Lifesaver Awards on Wednesday night from the Inland Northwest chapter of the American Red Cross.
The exploits of many of the award-winners are already wellknown because they occurred during the shooting spree by Dean Mellberg at Fairchild Air Force Base last June 20. Four people were shot to death before Mellberg himself was gunned down.
Other award-winners have gone without public acclaim, such as 14-year-old Kevin Kartz.
Kartz, a Mead Junior High student, was riding his bicycle with three friends through a field near his home north of Spokane the evening of Aug. 11.
His friend, Shane Fox, rode off a 15-foot cliff, hit his head on a rock and lost consciousness.
“He was like laying there all tangled up in his bike with his eyes closed,” Kartz said.
He didn’t panic, and his actions helped keep Fox alive.
Kartz hurried to his home across the street from the field, where he called Fox’s parents. Kartz then returned to the field with his father.
“He saved my life,” said Fox, who since has recovered from a fractured skull.
“Everything’s back to normal,” said Kartz, who visited with Fox on Wednesday afternoon before the award ceremony.
Others honored during a dinner at Cavanaugh’s Inn at the Park were:
Michael Padilla, a craftsman assigned to the 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron, who provided the first alert that shots were being fired at Fairchild Hospital.
Capt. Michael Lowe raced to the scene of the shootings at Fairchild to ensure the safety of his son, and then helped direct emergency crews and media into a safe area.
Sgt. Scott C. Paulsen was credited with helping many Fairchild shooting victims escape further injury or death.
Eva Payton Walch wrapped her arms around James Sigman, 5, and kept him out of Mellberg’s line of fire. She was shot, and eventually lost her leg.
Master Sgt. Paul Constantine and Hap Joplin carried a gunshot victim into a storage room and away from the still-shooting Mellberg.
Heather Ford, then a nursing student, assessed Dennis Moe’s condition and ministered to his needs after he was critically wounded during the shooting spree.
John Jay and Senior Airman Gary Burton prevented a panicstricken woman from running into the path of Mellberg’s gunfire.
Craig Johnston and Rand Kelson gathered 26 people and hid them in the hospital steam plant during the shootings.
Senior Airman Andrew P. Brown rode his bicycle to the scene and stopped the rampage by killing Mellberg.
The Fairchild Family Support Center Team and the Casualty Assistance Support Team helped hundreds of families after the shooting spree and a B-52 crash four days later.
Members of a Fairchild helicopter rescue crew spent more than eight hours locating and saving the life of a critically injured female smokejumper Aug. 11 during a forest fire near Bonners Ferry, Idaho. Crew members included Capt. Thomas H. Lee, Staff Sgt. John R. Howell, 1st Lt. Timothy W. Anderson, Senior Airman Robert A. Komarek and James Wilkey, a Heartflight nurse.
Jerry Everhart, Doug Hawkins, Larry Loveless, Gary Parsons, Jeff Everhart, Charles Loeschen and Daren Parsons saved the lives of three people whose car rolled into the freezing waters of Deep Creek, near Bonners Ferry, on Nov. 25.
Linda Howard of Clark Fork, Idaho, trained her bloodhound so well the dog found 3-year-old Justin Cordon, who had been lost for at least two hours.
Jonna M. Burgess, an office manager who cares for elderly people in her spare time.
The Spokane County Juvenile Court Guardian Ad Litem program is composed of more than 160 volunteers who act as advocates for children in cases of abuse, neglect or abandonment.