We have a winner!

Officer James Manson of Willingboro, New Jersey, is a law enforcement officer with a compelling story that stood out even among the heroic tales of numerous other first responders and garnered overwhelming support from Facebook voters during the finalist round of the award contest. His actions in saving an infant’s life earned him designation as the first ever winner of our Real Heroes Wear Badges, Not Capes award.

Though Manson has a 19-year record of dedicated service with the Willingboro Police Department, it’s a specific and recent act that resulted in his nomination for the award. In May 2013, Manson was called to a scene where a six-week-old baby was unresponsive. Manson performed CPR on the infant from the moment he arrived, while transporting the baby to his police car, and all the way to the hospital while a partner drove the vehicle. Even when the infant began to hemorrhage, Manson kept calm and continued performing CPR, ultimately saving the baby’s life. Thanks to Officer Manson, the infant who came so close to death just months ago, is alive, happy, and healthy today.

Look for our feature on Philadelphia firefighter Eladio “Andy” Martinez, contest finalist and runner-up, next week!

Check back soon for Officer James Manson’s full story, and other tales of heroism from the courageous first responders across South Jersey and the Philadelphia Metro region, in our Real Heroes Wear Badges, Not Capes gallery, currently under construction.