MARINE FORCES RESERVE, New Orleans – — A machine gunner with Anti-Tank Platoon, 25th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division, earned the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal for saving the life of a stranger.
Pfc. Michael Kifowit received the award Jan. 12, for saving Amanda Stevens’ life.
“Pfc. Kifowit is a great Marine,” said Capt. Jose F. Vengoechea, inspector instructor for Machine Gun Platoon, Anti-Terrorism Battalion. “I think it’s great he’s being recognized.”
Stevens was hit by a drunk driver Aug. 16, 2006. Kifowit was in his car behind Stevens and said as soon as he caught up to her car, it was already ablaze.
“I didn’t know what to think when I got there,” Kifowit said. “I just thought, ‘Oh my God!’ I shook her to wake her up, because she was unconscious, and told her I was going to get her out. Her leg was stuck underneath the crushed dashboard, so I had to shake it out.”
Eventually, Kifowit was able to free Stevens from her car and pulled her out of her broken window.
By the time the ambulance left taking Stevens to the hospital, people were already taking notice of Kifowit’s actions.
“The police were shaking my hand and telling me that I did a good job,” he said.
Kifowit believes his newfound fame strange.
“It feels good,” he said of the veritable spotlight he’s in now. “At the same time, I try to be humble. It was just something that needed to be done at the time, and I hope anybody in my position would do the same thing.”