ARLINGTON, Va. — A 15-year-old Oregon boy who saved a child from a fire, a father and son who rescued dozens of people from flooding in Louisiana, and a retired Catholic priest who ran a homeless shelter in San Diego were honored with Citizen Service Before Self Honors Monday at Arlington National Cemetery.

The awards, given to civilians "who have saved lives and acted selflessly to benefit others," were presented by the Congressional Medal of Honor Society to mark National Medal of Honor Day, March 25.

The recipients and their citations:

Jesse Shaffer III and Jesse Shaffer IV, Braithwaite, La.

Jesse Shaffer III and Jesse Shaffer IV distinguished themselves by extraordinary heroism during Hurricane Isaac on 29 August 2012. Facing high winds, torrential rains and flooding, officials in the town of Braithwaite had to call off rescue efforts because their vehicles couldn’t get through the high water. The Shaffer father-and-son team, knowing there were individuals and families stranded in rising waters, refused to give-up. They went into the flooded streets in their boat time after time, and saved one-hundred-and-twenty people. In one particular life-threatening rescue, they reached a family of five including young children, clinging to the roof of their trailer and brought them to safety, just minutes before rising waters covered the entire home. The Shaffers continued these rescue efforts despite losing their own home to flood waters during the storm. Their example of courage, sacrifice, selflessness and unwavering commitment in the face of life-threatening weather, was an inspiration to the community of Braithwaite.

Marcos Ugarte. Troutdale, Ore.

Marcos Ugarte distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism when a house fire broke out in his neighborhood in September 2012. Marcos and his father heard screams coming from several doors down, and ran to assist. When they arrived at the burning home, they found a man running out of the house, overcome with smoke and flames. He had tried unsuccessfully to rescue a seven-year-old boy trapped in a second floor room. The elder Ugarte attempted to reach the boy by crawling through thick smoke to his room, but the door was locked. Without regard for his own life, fourteen-year-old Marcos used a ladder and climbed to the second floor of the home. He broke through the screen, opened the window and brought the boy to safety.

Monsignor Joe Carroll, San Diego, CA

Monsignor Joe Carroll distinguished himself with extraordinary selfless service to his community by opening and running the Joan Kroc Center, a transitional housing program that has offered healthcare, job training, counseling, food and supplies for nearly thirty years. Father Joe’s facility has been a trailblazer for his ‘one-stop-shop’ approach to empower and rehabilitate the homeless. Although now retired, Father Joe still advocates for the multi-agency center that has provided a continuum of care to more than one-thousand individuals every day. Monsignor Joe Carroll has gone above and beyond to improve the lives of the homeless in Southern California, and by example throughout the United States.

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