Dozens of people gathered to see Kirk Rutland honored in a ceremony at AEDC recently. Rutland, a Navy employee and technical director of the Test Systems Sustainment Division at AEDC, received the Navy’s Superior Civilian Award for Valor for his heroism after a vehicle wreck June 17 in Manchester. Rutland was cutting grass on the day the wreck happened near his home. An SUV traveling on Gowen Road left the road, hit a tree and rolled back onto the pavement. The woman driving the vehicle was able to get out, but her 8-year-old son was pinned inside as the vehicle’s engine caught on fire. Rutland and a passerby hurried to help. “There wasn’t any hesitation about what we should do,” Rutland said. The passerby, Jason Little, worked to free the child while Rutland used a fire extinguisher to keep the flames at bay. Not long after they freed the boy and were getting away from the vehicle, there was a popping sound and it was soon engulfed in flames. The SUV was destroyed, but thanks to Rutland and Little, the boy escaped with only scratches and burns.