“Newsmaker: Returned Missionaries Recognized,” Ensign, Dec. 1997, 63
Michael Scott Peppler of Fruit Heights, Utah, and Kurt Forsberg of West Jordan, Utah, were presented a prestigious award recently by German ambassador Jürgen Chrobog. The ceremony, held in Salt Lake City, was attended by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
The award, the Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, is typically given to individuals who have made political contributions to Germany. In this case, however, the award was given for bravery.
In August 1995 the two men were companions serving in the Germany Leipzig Mission. While driving on the Autobahn, they caught sight of a car that had lost control, overturned, and crashed into a field near the highway.
“Although there was plenty of traffic on the highway, only one car stopped,” explained Ambassador Chrobog. The missionaries helped the semiconscious driver out of the car just moments before it exploded into flames. No one else was in the car at the time.
The young men’s response had been immediate. “We didn’t think about the danger involved,” Kurt said. “At least, not until the cops said, ‘You guys saved his life.’”
The driver, a businessman from Dresden and the father of two daughters, has fully recovered and remains in contact with the two former missionaries.