Jason Sesock doesn't like the attention that comes with being a hero. He's the kind of person who wears sunglasses so cameras won't get a picture of his whole face.
But Regions Bank in Paducah made it clear Friday that his act of bravery deserved recognition, giving him a check for $500 and a new skateboard.
Sesock, 26, was walking home past the bank at 2921 Broadway from the skate park in Noble Park when an attempted robbery took place on the evening of June 30.
Sesock said he saw a man with a black plastic bag over his head and a piece of metal rebar in his hand jump out of the bushes and run after a woman who was making a night deposit.
"He had a split-second to decide what to do and without hesitation he chose to defend someone who needed help," said Regions Bank Manager Jo Anna Brown before giving Sesock the rewards.
"While we never want someone to feel as though they have to put themselves at risk, Jason saw a need and took action, and we are tremendously grateful for (his) bravery."
Russell Zonca, 58, of Tennessee Ridge, Tenn., was later arrested and charged with first-degree robbery.
Sesock described a chaotic scene where the assailant attacked the woman with the rebar, but the woman blocked it. Once Sesock reached the struggling pair, he tried to grab the rebar from the man, but he wouldn't let it go. Sesock then start hitting him with his skateboard until he dropped the rebar.
Sesock said the woman then grabbed the rebar and struck the assailant in the head, and finally, the man ran away.
"There wasn't much time to think," Sesock said. "I want to give the attention to divine timing."
Sesock said he would have normally skateboarded home, but that evening had decided to walk.
"If I would have ridden my skateboard, I wouldn't have seen it," he said.
Paducah Police Detective Jason Hicks said he was proud of Sesock.
"I'm proud that there's someone in our community willing to do that for someone else," Hicks said. "I would hope that anyone who witnesses something like this would step in."
Hicks suggested people not make night deposits and instead wait until the next day if possible. If that isn't possible, he suggested always making night deposits with another person just to be safe.
Hicks said Sesock's description of Zonca was key in finding him and helped make a quick arrest.
Zonca later told Hicks that he and his wife had come to the area a few weeks ago to go on the riverboat in Metropolis, Illinois. He said the two got into an argument and his wife left him in Paducah. Zonca told Hicks that he had been living on the street since that time.
Jason Sesock's father, Paul Sesock of Paducah, said it didn't surprise him when he heard about his son's heroic act.
"You raise your kids in an environment of caring for others," he said. "When you see them do something like this it makes you very proud. He doesn't like all the attention, but to me it's a big deal."
Brown said Regions Bank often gives away green bicycles for special events, but in Sesock's case, a new skateboard seemed appropriate.
"We found a company that makes custom boards and told them about what Jason did," Brown said. "We are honored to give him this gift as part of our appreciation for his brave, heroic act."