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Oklahoma Guardsman Receives Star of Valor Award For Saving Stabbing Victim

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Maj. Gen. Robbie Asher, the adjutant general for Oklahoma, presents the citation for the Oklahoma Star of Valor to Sgt. Kevin Painter of Lawton, Oklahoma, during annual training. Maj. Gen. Robbie Asher, the adjutant general for Oklahoma, presents the citation for the Oklahoma Star of Valor to Sgt. Kevin Painter of Lawton, Oklahoma, during annual training.
The stabbing victim thanks Sgt. Painter for saving her life. The stabbing victim thanks Sgt. Painter for saving her life.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

An Oklahoma National Guardsman received the Star of Valor award for his heroic acts in saving a stabbing victim from her attacker and treating her wounds.

According to officials with the Oklahoma National Guard, Sgt. Kevin Painter, a medic in Headquarters Company, 45th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, was awarded the medal for putting himself between the victim and a knife-wielding attacker, and treating the victim's wounds.

Maj. Gen. Robbie Asher, the adjutant general for Oklahoma, presented the award among a number of Painter's fellow Soldiers.

“His actions represent the core of what we do in the National Guard,” said Asher. “When our Soldiers see a challenge, they are going to do what they need to do. His actions are a great example of why all of us wear the uniform.”

4/16/2015 Related Story: Stabbing Victim Thanks Oklahoma National Guardsmen For Saving Her

According to authorities, on March 15, along Interstate 35 near the Interstate 40 interchange in Oklahoma City, Painter's training as a combat medic provided him with the confidence and ability to apply life-saving aid to numerous stab wounds on the victim's hands and arms. The attacker ran away and jumped off the I-35 bridge and into the Oklahoma River as Painter stayed to comfort the victim until police and first responders arrived. The victim was eight-months pregnant at the time of the attack.

The criteria for the Oklahoma Star of Valor, which is the Guard's second-highest award, includes an individual's risk of life or limb and protection of another life, according to officials. 

Officials said Painter has received various awards for his service, including the Army commendation medal. However, Painter said he has never received an award as prestigious as this.

“It's not something I did for an award or recognition,” said Painter. “You just react. When you're training to be a combat medic, you can't think about what you do, you just do it. It just clicks.”

The victim has since had her baby and both are in excellent condition.

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