BALTIMORE (WJZ) — ”Always Ready, Always There,” is the motto of the United States National Guard and it holds true even when they’re not on duty.

SGT. Bradley Boucher was vacationing in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee when his skills as a combat medic in the Maryland National Guard were put to the test.

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“A car had somehow [swerved] out of control and had gone down a steep embankment and hit a tree,” said SGT Boucher.

His instincts kicked, running down the hill to help and carrying the most injured woman. “She was unconscious with some head injuries,” said SGT. Boucher.

Boucher was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for his actions. An award for acts of valor.

Over the past year, there have been several instances of guardsmen being in the right place at the right time. In April, SGT. Joseph Alemany was delivering vaccines to Southern Maryland when he saw a car accident. Alemany immediately jumped into action, providing basic care to the driver who was in and out of consciousness.

“That type of intervention is extremely important,” said SGT. Alemany. “It’s oftentimes the difference between life and death.”

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In July, when a tree collapsed on a garage in Anne Arundel County, trapping more than 20 people inside, SGT. David Burke, a neighbor, was the first on the scene.

“I went around back and a mother was screaming that her 2-year-old was trapped inside. And I was able to help her out,” explained SGT. Burke.

Shortly after, MSGT Andy Peacock, who was at the party had just left but returned to help.

“It’s who you are as a person,” said MSGT Peacock. “Are you a person who sits by and watches things happen, or are you a person who says this is what I’ve here for? I’m going to do something about it.”

All 4 of these soldiers have advanced medical training that they’ve received from the national guard — training that helped them save lives in these situations.

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Sean Streicher