Knife River employee named 'hero'

Knife River truck driver Gene Fisk, second from right, has earned the company’s Hero Award. Also pictured from left, are Vice President of construction Mark Magnuson, Regional President John Quade and Vice President of concrete Jerry Lang.

Knife River Corporation’s Gene Fisk last month provided life-saving assistance at the scene of an accident near Mora, Minn. Fisk, a truck driver for Knife River and a volunteer firefighter, has earned the company’s Hero Award for his actions.

Fisk was driving to Mora on Highway 70 when he saw a vehicle speed through an intersection and into the ditch. He braked to avoid a collision with the other vehicle, then parked his truck and ran to the ditch to help the other driver. After some difficulty, he opened the back door of the passenger vehicle, got in and turned off the engine. The driver complained that her neck was sore, so Fisk stabilized her head.

He asked her a series of questions and, when she couldn’t respond correctly, he asked if she was diabetic. She was, and was having difficulty focusing. When another person approached the vehicle, Fisk had the man call 911. Fisk stayed with the woman until emergency responders arrived to take over.

“Gene has been trained to react in these types of emergency situations, and that’s just what he did,” said Jeff Lambert, safety director for Knife River’s North Central Region. “First, he was able to control his truck and avoid a collision with the oncoming car. Then he ran to the other vehicle and helped the crash victim. Gene is an exemplary individual and is deserving of our Knife River Hero Award.”

Knife River developed the Hero Award in 2008 to honor employees who use their first aid and safety training to help save lives and do the right thing during an emergency situation.