Robert Siemann, 18, was at his home in Albertson, N.Y., when he heard loud noises coming from outside. Siemann and his father ran to investigate and saw that a garbage truck had crashed into a neighbor’s house.

The truck driver was hurt but appeared to be stable. As Siemann’s father shut off the truck’s engine, they noticed a strong smell of gas coming from the house.

Someone was pounding on the house’s badly damaged front door from inside and yelling for help. Siemann knew the homeowner was trapped. After kicking and pulling at the door, Siemann and his father finally broke it open.

The smell of gas was almost overwhelming as the rescuers helped the homeowner and her dogs exit the home.

The Siemanns helped the homeowner and her pets to the safety of a neighbor’s house. Thanks to their quick actions, neither the woman nor her animals were seriously hurt.

Eagle Scout Robert Siemann Jr., an assistant Scoutmaster with Troop 45, chartered to First Presbyterian Church in Mineola, N.Y., received an Honor Medal with Crossed Palms for his actions. It is Scouting’s highest award for bravery.

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