Highway Patrol honors good Samaritans
Two Lyon County men were honored Wednesday for saving the life of a motorist who was trapped in his burning vehicle after suffering a seizure last fall.
Robert Teixeira Jr., 26, of Mound House, and Larry Moore, 50, of Dayton, each received a Medal of Valor during a ceremony at the Nevada Highway Patrol office in Reno.
“Mr. Moore and Mr. Teixeira acted in a very expeditious manner and went above and beyond the call of duty expected of ordinary citizens by risking their own lives to save the life of a complete stranger,” said Department of Public Safety Deputy Chief Brian Sanchez.
Teixeira, no relation to former Carson City mayor Marv Teixeira, said he was at his home near Newman Lane off Highway 50 East on Sept. 5 when he heard an engine revving about 7:30 a.m.
He then noticed smoke and, thinking it was a brush fire, grabbed a shovel from his father and ran to the highway.
Once on scene, Teixeira spotted 47-year-old Jose Flores-Gonzales of Dayton, unconscious and his vehicle nose-first in a ditch. The revving engine, said Teixeira, caused the vehicle to burst into flames.
Teixeira said he tried desperately to free Flores-Gonzales from the wreckage, but he was unable to get the seat belt unlatched.
“I was freaking out because I was not able to get him out myself. Good thing Larry came along ’cause I would have been there helpless myself,” said Teixeira. “He just came out of nowhere.”
Moore said he was on his way to Home Depot in Carson City when he spotted the fire and then saw Teixeira struggling to get into the vehicle.
Moore stopped and rushed down. After Teixeira used the shovel to open the scorching hot door, Moore reached inside, flames licking at both men’s legs, and unlatched the belt.
The two men then pulled Flores-Gonzales from the wreckage.
“As soon as he released the belt, we drug him up over the guardrail and as soon as we got him over the guardrail the car pretty much fully engulfed,” said Teixeira.
Moore said that six months before the accident, he’d suffered a heart attack and had stents put into his arteries. He’d been taking it easy, concerned his heart couldn’t handle exertion.
As he watched the ambulance load Flores-Gonzales, Moore said he came to a realization.
“I thought, man, my heart’s good now,” he said.
Both Moore and Teixeira sustained minor burns on their legs and arms. Flores-Gonzales recovered, but was not present at the ceremony.
Also honored were troopers Wesley Hubred and Doug Kassenbaum.
Hubred received the meritorious service award for disarming a suicidal man who threatened to shoot up a Fallon bar on Sept. 23.
Kassenbaum received a lifesaving award for giving medication to a heart-attack victim after stopping the vehicle for speeding in Silver Springs on Dec. 4.