The Boston Celtics honored two Belgrade, Maine residents over the weekend, for their quick response to a fuel truck accident that saved the driver's life.

The accident happened on January 2, 2019 on Route 27 in Belgrade. An SUV stopped at the stop sign at the intersection of Routes 8 and 11, before driving into the path of an oncoming tanker truck that was carrying 9,500 gallons of fuel oil. The tanker truck overturned and caught fire. The initial report was that the driver of the SUV and the tanker's driver, 54-year-old Mark Tuttle of Albion, had minor injuries. But many wondered how the truck driver could have possibly escaped the raging fire.

The credit goes to 29-year-old Nick Claudel and 62-year-old Joe Arsenault, who are both employees of the nearby Belgrade Post Office. Both men are military Veterans, who said they never thought twice before racing to the truck working together to pull Tuttle out through the windshield, saving his life. Less than a minute after they pulled the driver to safety, the truck erupted into a wall of flame.

On Friday, Arsenault and Claudel attended a Boston Celtics/Milwaukee Bucks basketball game, and were presented with a 'Heroes Among Us' award, by the team. The award is part of a program that began in 1997, and recognizes outstanding individuals who have made exceptional and lasting contributions to their communities.

Thank you, Nick and Joe, for your contributions to our country and to your community. We're proud to call you Mainers.

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