Mayor presents Carnegie Medal to Rochester man for heroism

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – On behalf of the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission, Mayor Malik Evans presented Rochester resident Darnell Wilson Jr. with the Carnegie Medal on Tuesday in recognition for his heroic actions to stop a robbery and potential deadly assault in 2019.

“In a moment of crisis that could paralyze anyone with shock or fear, Darnell Wilson Jr.’s immediate instinct was to put his own life at risk to save the life of another. The Carnegie Medal was established more than 100 years ago to recognize ordinary men and women who responded to life-threatening situations with extraordinary bravery and selflessness – and this man has certainly proved himself to be worthy of that recognition. It gives me great pride to know that this fellow Rochester citizen now stands among this esteemed group of heroes, and I am honored to present Darnell Wilson Jr. with the Carnegie Medal.”

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The Carnegie Hero Fund Commission and Carnegie Medal were established in 1904 by industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie to recognize moments of heroic valor in civilian life in the U.S and Canada.

Those who receive the Carnegie Medal, and they, or their survivors, become eligible for financial considerations, including one-time grants, scholarship aid, death benefits, and continuing assistance. Wilson is one of 16 people awarded the medal in 2022.

Wilson was honored for his actions in December of 2019, when he physically confronted an armed robber and likely saved the life of People’s Choice Kitchen owner Evangela Stanley. Two shots were fired during the incident and Wilson pushed the assailant through the restaurant’s front window and out onto the sidewalk. He took the gun from the robber, who was arrested and charged with robbery and possession of the weapon.

People’s Choice Kitchen is in the 19th Ward and has been owned by Evangela Stanley for 18 years. The Jamaican and soul food restaurant is known for its “pay what you can afford” promotions, where customers are allowed to pay whatever they are able to for a meal.