Taunton Mall Stabbing Victim Honored With 9/11 Award For Bravery

BOSTON (CBS) — The Taunton man who died during the stabbing rampage at the Silver City Galleria last May received a bravery award created in honor of a victim of 9/11.

George Heath was posthumously awarded the Madeline Amy Sweeney Award for Civilian Bravery during a ceremony at the Massachusetts State House on Sunday. His wife Rosemary Heath accepted the award on his behalf.

“I just want to thank everyone for this award. I just wish my husband was standing next to me to receive it himself,” Rosemary Heath said. “I want everyone to think about helping other people do the right thing.”

“Be like Amy and past recipients,” she said.

Rosemary Heath accepted the award on her husband's behalf (WBZ)

Rosemary Heath accepted the The Madeline Amy Sweeney Award for Civilian Bravery on her husband’s behalf. (WBZ)

George Heath died while trying to protect others from the stabber, including a pregnant waitress.

“When faced with the horror of an armed attacker, George Heath did not hesitate for an instant to act decisively to defend the safety of those around him,” Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said in a public statement. “George Heath showed the same type of character and resolve that defined the heroes of 9/11 and it is our privilege to honor his sacrifice on this solemn anniversary.”

Madeline Amy Sweeney was an Acton resident and an American Airlines flight attendant who was aboard the first aircraft that flew into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Sweeney is credited for contacting  the airline’s ground services crew to convey critical information about the hijackers and their actions on the plane that morning.

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