Security guard Caglar (Charlie) Erdogdu leaped on a deranged man who had doused himself in fuel and was trying to set himself alight in a crowded supermarket. Photo: Brendan EspositoHe faced a crazed man who had doused himself in kerosene and splashed it around the aisles of a supermarket in a bid to kill himself and others.
Staff were trying unsuccessfully to calm the man who had pulled out a box of matches was about to set himself alight.
But despite the obvious danger, Caglar “Charlie” Erdogdu threw himself on top of the offender to stop him from lighting the matches.
The 25-year-old security guard from Parklea also ended up covered in the fuel as he pinned down the man’s arms, forcing him drop the kerosene and the matches.
Mr Erdogdu was one of five security guards recognised with an Australian Security Medal Of Valour for extraordinary acts of bravery during the past year.
Steve Pierce from Securecorp described the actions of Mr Erdogdu as a “tremendously heroic act” that saved not only the life of the offender, but also stopped a possible explosion which could have hurt or killed many other people.
“Security Officer Caglar Erdogdu gave no thought to his own safety or wellbeing and his decisive action and bravery is to be commended,” said Mr Pierce who successfully nominated Mr Erdogdu for the bravery award.
The awards were established by a group of security professionals to recognise acts of bravery and achievement in a dangerous profession and change perceptions of the security industry.
The patron of the Australian Security Medals Foundation is MP Philip Ruddock.
Also awarded for their bravery were Gary Jannese and Emir Balicevac, from SNP, for disarming a man armed with a large knife who was trying to harm himself at the University of Sydney.
Jye Nevins from Asset Group Solutions was recognised for his bravery after he was injured while grabbing a hunting knife from a man wrestling with police and security guards.
Matthew Newman, from Southern Cross Group Services, was recognised after he ran to help protect people after a man was fatally stabbed at a Parramatta Shopping Centre.
The awards have also recognised lifetime achievements of a number of industry professionals including George Zeitoune from Asset Group Solutions; Tom Roche, managing director of SNP, the country’s third largest security company; Neville Kiely from Central Monitoring Services; and Kathy Pavlich from Sydney TAFE.
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