Newtown Hero Receives Carnegie Medal For Rescue

A Newtown man was recognized on the House floor for the heroic actions he took last September when he prevented a 32-year-old man from drowning in Belmar, New Jersey.

Kristian Falkenstein of Newtown was presented with the Carnegie Medal on Tuesday. This award, established 114 years ago by Andrew Carnegie, is given throughout the United States and Canada to those who risk their lives while attempting to save the lives of others.

After noticing a man being swept out to sea, last September, Falkenstein immediately swam out to save him. When Falkenstein reached the man, he was barely above water.

Despite the strong rip current and tall waves, Falkenstein managed to keep himself and the man afloat for several minutes while lifeguards and police responded until the Coast Guard arrived on the scene.

Falkenstein’s heroism was recognized by Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick on the House floor, last week.

“Kristian Falkenstein is nothing short of a hero,” Fitzpatrick expressed. “His valiant actions saved a life that day. I applaud Kristian for his bravery and willingness to take on significant risk in assistance of a fellow citizen.”

Falkenstein and the victim were both transported to a hospital following the incident. The man did not sustain any injuries, but Falkenstein was treated for effects of near-drowning, from which he made a full recovery.

WBCB’s Brianna Williams contributed to this post.