A frigid night out on Lake Minnetonka turned into a life-or-death situation for a man who fell through the ice back in February, but Ryan Neslund is alive thanks to 3 Hennepin County sheriff's deputies. They were awarded Monday night in front of 600 Hennepin County employees and residents.
Minnesota Gopher football head coach Jerry Kill was on-hand to commend them for their teamwork. Jeremy Gunia, Alan Lange and David Protivinsky serve on the sheriff's water patrol.
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On February 25, Neslund, a paraplegic, was driving on ice to a fishing location near the Arcola Bridge when his vehicle plunged through the ice in sub-zero temperatures. He cried for help, and the 3 deputies pulled him out using a human chain.
"With the training we have, it gives you confidence in what you do. We work together as a team and we all had each other's back that night," Lange said.
They received a merit award and ribbon, but they don't necessarily consider themselves to be "heroes."
"For me, it's just another day at work," Lange said.