By Steve Neavling
A Border Patrol agent from the El Centro Sector was awarded the agency’s highest honor for risking his own life to save a migrant who was drowning in the frigid, trecherous waters of a canal outside of El Centro.
Agent C. Lara was assigned to the Calexico Border Patrol Station in February 2019 when he responded to a report of a man struggling to swim across the All-American Canal.
After several attempts to pull the man to safety using a rescue disc, Lara jumped in the canal, despite dangerous underwater currents.
“Agent Lara, disregarding the dangers of the swift water, swam toward the victim knowing that the individual would soon give in to exhaustion and be pulled under,” CBP said in a news release Tuesday. “Agent Lara took hold of the man and pulled him from imminent danger. Agent Lara’s heroism and disregard for being pulled under himself most certainly saved the man’s life. Agent Lara went beyond the call of duty by risking his own life to save the life of another.”
Lara was presented with the Newton-Azrak Award.