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Zion tourist wins award for saving hiker's life

Published March 27, 2012 11:53 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A California police detective has won the prestigious national Citizen's Award for Bravery for helping save the life of a hiker during his vacation in Utah's Zion National Park.

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar presented the heroism award to David Bavencoff earlier this month.

Bavencoff was hiking with his family on the popular Angels Landing Trail March 30, 2010, when he saw a teenage girl slip off the trail. He acted quickly to grab the girl by her ankle and stop her fall, which officials say probably would have been fatal.

Bavencoff and the girl's father pulled her back up to the trail.

The incident wasn't reported until Bavencoff told his supervisor how his vacation went. The supervisor notified rangers at Zion, who nominated Bavencoff for the award.