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N.J. CO awarded Carnegie Medal for off-duty rescue

CO Chad Ammerman swam 300 yards to save an elderly man in the water near his sinking boat


Chad Ammerman, a senior corrections officer at the Garden State Youth Facility, received the Carnegie Medal from the Carnegie Hero Fund.

Nicolas Fernandes

By Nicolas Fernandes

LITTLE EGG HARBOR, N.J. — A New Jersey corrections officer has been honored with a prestigious award for rescuing an elderly boater while off-duty last year.

Chad Ammerman, a senior corrections officer at the Garden State Youth Facility, swam 300 yards off the coast of Little Egg Harbor in June 2021 to save an 82-year-old man who was in the water near his sinking boat.

Ammerman received the Carnegie Medal for the rescue, an award given by the Carnegie Hero Fund that recognizes those who risk death or serious injury while attempting to save someone else’s life.

“I’m just grateful I could be in the right place at the right time that day to help,” Ammerman said. “I appreciate the Carnegie Hero Fund for recognizing me in this way.”

The Department of Corrections was proud of Ammerman’s willingness to save the boater while off-duty.

“Senior Officer Ammerman represents the best of NJDOC,” state Department of Corrections Commissioner Victoria L. Kuhn said. “When we say we are ‘NJDOC Strong,’ this is what we mean – a willingness to put others before self, to risk one’s own safety to save another. We’re proud the Carnegie Hero Fund has recognized his remarkable actions this way.”

Ammerman was also praised by the New Jersey Police Benevolent Association 105.

“Our training and careers in the NJDOC extend well beyond our tour at our facilities,” said NJPBA 105 President William Sullivan. “We appreciate his actions and heroism in saving this gentleman. Our officers are the best in the nation and times like this show just that.”

The Carnegie Medal was awarded to 16 recipients this year in the U.S. and Canada.

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