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ALTON, Ill. – A quick-thinking Schnucks employee who saved a toddler’s life earlier this spring received an award Wednesday for his heroism, as well as a proclamation by the mayor of Alton.

Back in March, 24-year-old Ben Mazur was working at Schnucks and collecting carts in the parking lot, when he noticed a cart rolling down the hill with a child inside – all while cars were pulling in and out of the lot.

The cart got away from a mother who was trying to get her other children in the car. She hardly noticed until it was almost too late, but thankfully, Mazur was watching. His awareness kept the child safe and it definitely did not go unnoticed.

On Wednesday, Alton Mayor Brant Walker surprised the 24-year-old by declaring May 5 as Ben Mazur Day. It’s a special way for Mazur, his family, co-workers, and trainers from Challenge Unlimited to celebrate his act of good faith and, coincidentally, his birthday.

“Schnucks was actually his dream job so you know it was like a big deal when he got hired at Schnucks,” said Jiuana Evans, job coach at Challenge Unlimited.

Mazur is on the autism spectrum and has been working with Challenge Unlimited, a program that helps people with disabilities find employment in the community.

“I wasn’t surprised because I feel like it’s Ben, but it just made me feel so good because he’s outstanding and I know he’s going to continue to do great things,” Evans said.