On Oct. 18, a group comprised of first responders filled the courtyard area at the La Encantada Shopping Center to recognize four heroes.

During the fifth-annual Heroes Day press conference, Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, along with University of Arizona Medial Center Trauma Surgeon Dr. Peter Rhee, and others paid tribute to four recipients of the Hero of the Year Award.

This year, one of the four recipients is Ty Cobb, a Northwest Fire District firefighter.

Cobb, who was coming home one night after working an overtime shift, noticed traffic slowing on Interstate 10. The reason for the slowing was because a pickup truck was traveling the wrong way on the off ramp at I-10 and Congress. The pickup collided head on with a Sedan. Cobb rushed to the accident to find one victim from the accident had been ejected, while the other was trapped inside the car as it began to catch fire.

Cobb was unable to open any of the doors, so he entered through the rear window and began to render first aid to the driver. With the help of others on scene, Cobb was able to get the driver out and attend to him until medical assistance arrived on scene.

“Cobb represented the very best of what a firefighter should do: putting the lives of other before himself,” said Rothschild before presenting him with his award.

Cobb was humble about receiving the recognition, which is decided by a special selection committee after being nominated by his peers.

“It’s a great honor and privilege to be nominated by my district,” Cobb said after the conference. “There are a lot of things that go on behind the scenes that people don’t know about. All of these people in law enforcement, fire and EMS; they really go the extra mile for the community. And I want to thank them for it.”

Like most first responders, Cobb didn’t help someone so he could later be recognized. He saw someone who needed help and did his best to help them.

In addition to Cobb, Tucson Police Officer Jobe Dickinson, U.S. Border Patrol agent Roberto Heredia, and U.S. Air Force staff sergeant Aaron Escalante were recognized.

In 2008, a special day was created to honor fallen Tucson Police Officer Erik Hite, and also thank members of local law enforcement who serve Arizona and put their lives at risk every day.

It is a day designed to thank first responders for keeping the community safe and helping the citizens in times of crisis. It gives the community a chance to show their appreciation for all they do, while also raising money for a cause.

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