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Deputy chief receives Mountain View Fire Rescue's first medal of valor for actions during Marshall Fire

Deputy Chief Sterling Folden saved four lives the day of the Marshall Fire, Mountain View Fire Rescue said.

BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. — Mountain View Fire Rescue made history on Thursday as it awarded its first medal of valor. The medal went to Deputy Chief Sterling Folden.

The department said Folden went above and beyond the call of duty during the early hours of the Marshall Fire.

According to Mountain View Fire Rescue, Folden saved four lives that day. He went into Original Town Superior and found a family that had not left and convinced them to evacuate. The department said he attempted to follow them out but was cut off by the fire.

Folden was able to find an opening and escape only to find an elderly couple unable to get out. He put them in his car and brought them to safety. 

Folden said he does not consider himself a hero. Instead, he looks to all the neighbors that helped one another that day.

"A big success that day was neighbors helping neighbors, and so spreading the word about the fire coming, the evacuations, helping each other get out, helping each other put out the homes as they could, their cars," Folden said. "You hear all the heroic stories that day, and I hope I people don't forget that."

Credit: Michael Grady

Folden said he was born in raised in Boulder, so this fire was very personal to him. He said not a day goes by that he doesn't think about the fire and the lives it has impacted.

"Every day. I think about it every day. if I would have done something different, would it have turned out different? So there isn’t a day that goes by that you don’t actually think about it, for me anyways," Folden said. "I always want to take the lessons away and remember that day. Always think about how to improve yourself from it." 

Mountain View also recognized dozens of other firefighters who responded to the Marshall Fire, and fought it for hours. They said their quick initial response and dedication helped to save property and lives.

Credit: Michael Grady

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