To applause, Mayor Lee Brand presented Cregg Jerri with the Carnegie Hero Medal. Jerri’s heroic acts went viral in 2017, after he stopped an attempted robbery by fighting off the suspect at a Starbucks.
The award comes from the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission and is only awarded to Americans and Canadians who save the lives of others through extraordinary measures.
When thinking back to that moment now almost a year and a half later, Jerri said, “My first thought was I got to get out of here. This is a robbery.”
However, as the now viral security video from the north Fresno Starbucks shows, Jerri calmly put down his iPad. He then grabbed a chair and started hitting the suspect, Ryan Flores.
“The second nature took over,” Jerri said with a chuckle.
Jerri would end up getting stabbed in the neck during the struggle. He’s made a full recovery since then. Flores has since been convicted for his actions, now serving time in prison.
This wasn’t Jerri’s first honor for that day. Back in Sept. 2017, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer honored him for his bravery, too.
Moments after being presented with his new medal, Jerri didn’t think he’d ever get this kind of honor for what he did that day.
“I had no idea that it would go, as people told me, viral,” he said. “I didn’t realize the impact it would have. Obviously, I just did what I had to do, from there on it went everywhere.”
Despite the national attention it got him, Jerri said his life hasn’t changed much.
“I still go to Starbucks. I still do the same things I normally do. I’m just glad that the girls [in the Starbucks] are safe. Everything turned out for the better,” he said.
However, there is one change he’s hoping for.
“I’m in the market for a new job right now. Not ready to retire, that’s for sure,” Jerri said with a smile.
During the ceremony, Brand read a proclamation saying March 21st is now Cregg Jerri Day.