FORT BRAGG, N.C. (WTVD) -- While most take cover at the sound of gunshots, one Fort Bragg soldier ran toward the chaos - and saved a man's life.
Private First Class Patrick Montgomery said he was at the right place at the right time last November when he rendered aid to a man who had been shot in the leg during a robbery at a Fayetteville pawn shop. Thursday night, Montgomery received the Exemplary Citizen Award for his actions.
He was driving by when he heard gunshots and let his instincts take over.
"It probably wasn't smart going up there, but he probably would've been dead if I didn't," Montgomery told ABC11 in November.
Montgomery entered the shop to discover the man, 63-year-old Ron Ruple, had been shot and was losing blood fast.
Montgomery was able to create a tourniquet with a nearby cable --and stabilize the man until paramedics arrived. Ruple and Montgomery reunited at the store three weeks later.
"He immediately knew me," Montgomery said at Thursday's service. "He shook my hand. He said you don't know how thankful I am for what you did for me."
Montgomery has been stationed on Fort Bragg for approximately a year. His wife and baby also attended the ceremony.
Fort Bragg soldier honored for running toward gunshots, saving man 'was in right place at right time'