Superhero police officer awarded for daring highway rescue

Usually, when someone usually hears the word "superhero," he thinks of someone in the comics or on the big screen, such as Superman or Iron Man.  However, police officers can also fill this role when they go beyond the call of duty to keep citizens from harm.

That's what Kansas Highway Patrol officer Karl Koenig did, and thanks to his brave actions, a family was able to escape from a snowstorm unharmed.

First reported on KSNT, the rescue took place back in February.  Snowy conditions had hit the state, leaving several cars stranded on the road.  Koenig took it upon himself to rescue a trapped motorist.

A driver had apparently lost control of her vehicle and let it spin out in the middle of the road.  Many passersby continued around her, but Koenig pulled over at the scene to offer help.  As he assisted a woman and her daughter in the car, he performed an incredible feat to avoid an oncoming semi-truck, based on what eyewitness John Bowes said in a Facebook post.

"Within seconds you made the most perfect Superman dive from the road into the ditch, face planting in the ice and snow to avoid being hit by an 18-wheeler," Bowes explained.  "Within seconds, you were back on your feet and running back to save the lady in the car."

Video footage from the incident can be seen in this story on Local 12.  It shows how closely Koenig came to being hit by a passing truck, which continued going at top speed despite the car on the road.  However, as Bowes explained in his post, Koenig wasted no time getting back up — despite his superhero dive on the side of the road — to return to those in need.

Bowes recommended that Koenig receive an award for his efforts.  "I witness a true ‘super hero’ going about his job."

Kansas's governor, Laura Kelly, was in complete agreement.  As a result, alongside the Kansas Highway Patrol's Colonel Herman Jones, she recently awarded Koenig a fitting Super Hero Award.

"The actions by Master Trooper Karl Koenig that day is [sic] just another example of the many amazing things that the men and women of the law enforcement community do every day in Kansas," Kelly said during the award ceremony.  "I know I speak for everyone when I say how grateful we all are for Master Trooper Koenig’s heroic actions."

Jones had kind words to say about his officer as well.  "Master Trooper Koenig's quick and decisive actions likely prevented additional collisions and potential injuries to other motorists and himself," he said.  "His selfless actions, decision to expedite his response to the scene, and park his emergency vehicle in a manner protecting the previous collision demonstrates his dedication to preserving lives and property through service, courtesy, and protection."

Koenig is a seasoned veteran with the Kansas Highway Patrol.  He's been on the force for 33 years and continues to serve today.

This is just another indication of how officers can be heroes, whether it's recognized or not.  Even if they don't possess the high-tech gizmos that Iron Man has in his suit or the super-strength of the Incredible Hulk, they put their lives on the line to keep others safe, even in the direst of conditions.

Kudos to you, Officer Koenig, and your superheroic actions.  It shows that you don't need a cape to show what you can do — just the right amount of determination and courage to get the job done.  That's a true hero to us.

Michael Letts is the CEO and Founder of InVestUSA, a national grassroots non-profit organization helping hundreds of communities provide thousands of bulletproof vests for their police forces through educational, public relations, sponsorship, and fundraising programs. 

Image: Fox 10 Phoenix via YouTube.

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