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Slain Houston hero had local ties
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A good Samaritan who lost his life defending a Houston woman from an armed robber last November has been recognized by Congressional Medal of Honor recipients.

Sam Irick, 24, was shot and killed outside a Chevron gas station on Nov. 11, 2010, according to reports in The Houston Chronicle. Police said he intervened when Anthony Ferrell put a gun in Amberly Wait’s stomach and demanded she hand over her purse. The shooting was captured on video and Ferrell has been charged with capital murder.

Irick’s great-aunt, Lee Gilmore, knew he was considered a hero in Houston. The grateful Wait family reportedly paid for the slain college student’s funeral, and Amberly Wait’s husband, Jeb Wait, said Sam Irick is the reason their three young children still have a mother. Now Irick is a finalist for the most prestigious civilian award in America, the "Citizen Service Before Self" award.

Recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor have selected 20 finalists for the civilian honor. Three winners will be announced this week and will be honored Friday at Arlington National Cemetery.

"I think it would be wonderful," Gilmore said of the possible honor. "He’s always been a good person. He just stepped up and did what he knew he should do."