The New Iberia City Council, on behalf of the New Iberia community, honored the two men who saved the life of a kidnapped 10-year-old girl.

During the council's meeting on Wednesday night, Dion Merrick and Brandon Antoine were given Life-Saving Valor Awards.

Of course, the two men gained national attention on February 8 when they helped save the life of a young girl who was kidnapped. While on their route as sanitation workers, they spotted a car in a field that matched an Amber Alert and parked their garbage truck to block it in until police arrived.

"It was just a blessing to make sure she was home and home safe," Merrick said after receiving his award.

Several New Iberia City Council members praised the pair for their vigilance.

"It takes a certain person to be aware of your surroundings, and we're sure glad that you were aware at that time," said District 3 Councilman David Broussard.

Deidre Ledbetter, District 4 Councilwoman, echoed those sentiments. "We will always thank you. The parents will thank you. The city thanks you, and just keep on being who you are."

The man who allegedly kidnapped 10-year-old Jalisa Lasalle is Michael Sereal. He is a registered sex offender who's now facing aggravated kidnapping charges.

Jalisa's father, Jermaine Lasalle, was in the audience for Wednesday's meeting.

"Most of the times when people see stuff like that, Amber Alerts and stuff, they kind of brush it off, but they looked, and seen, and they acted on it, so they deserve everything that they're getting," Jermaine Lasalle said.

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