Knott County man receives Va. award for heroism after saving fellow correctional officer's life

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RICHMOND, Va. (WYMT) - A Knott County man recently received the Virginia Governor’s Honor Award for Heroism after he saved a fellow correctional officer’s life in Virginia.

Tyler Thornsberry is from the Kite community of Knott County and works in Wise County, Virginia at the Red Onion State Prison.

 In December of last year, an inmate at the prison attacked an officer with a weapon made of sharpened plastic while being escorted from his cell to the recreation area.

Thornsberry was walking around the corner of the hall when he saw the other officer being stabbed. He subdued and restrained the inmate.
The officer had serious stab injuries to his head and chest. The warden of the prison says Thornsberry’s quick action could be the reason the officer is alive.

Officers say the attacker, Keith Dwane McDuffie, faces one count of capital murder, two counts of assault and battery on a corrections officer and one count of possession of an unauthorized weapon by an inmate.

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