Awards

Orrville Police Department honors its own

By PAUL LOCHER

Staff Writer

ORRVILLE — Several personnel from the Orrville Police Department were honored with awards presented at a recent meeting. The awards included letters of recognition, lifetime service awards and a lifesaving medal.

Chief Dino Carozza said in the past awards for various achievements in the department had been handed out individually and without fanfare. He said that this year, at the suggestion of Sgt. Howard Funk, it was decided to present the awards during a departmental meeting so the recipients could be congratulated by their peers.

“I think its important to have these people recognized at a formal presentation,” said Carozza, saying he hoped the awards might serve as inspiration to the recipients’ peers.

Letters of recognition were received by patrolman Josh Hunt and dispatcher Pam Morris.

Morris’ letter was presented in recognition of her ability to successfully train three new dispatchers over the course of an 18-month period while simultaneously attending to her regular duties.

Hunt received his recognition for his work on a rash of motor vehicle thefts in the community. Hunt’s efforts, which culminated in the arrests of two suspects, included tracking offenders through snow.

Three officers were recognized with lifetime achievement awards. Those were presented to officers who provided faithful service to the community for a period of 20 consecutive years. Receiving those awards were Carozza, Capt. Jay Lax and patrolman Jim Davis.

Two officers received a lifesaving medal. This is awarded to officers or dispatchers whose efforts resulted in either saving a life or prolonging a person’s life until further treatment could be administered by medical personnel. The recipients of this award were detective Bill Stitt and deputy patrolman Randy Regan.

Carozza said that on Jan. 13, Regan and Stitt were called to a residence at Chateau Circle where they discovered a 47-year-old man had collapsed and ceased breathing as a result of a drug overdose. The officers, whose response time was two minutes, were able to use an automatic electronic defibrillator coupled with CPR to get a pulse and revive the victim.

Stitt’s recognition was for a March 20, 2005, medical emergency at a Cleveland Avenue residence where he discovered a female victim in cardiac arrest. Stitt was able to use the AED coupled with CPR to revive the victim until she could be transported by ambulance.

Carozza said police personnel were issued both ribbons and medals to be worn on their class A uniforms. He said the department plans to construct a display case in the squad room where the medals can be displayed when they are not being worn by personnel.

In addition, Carozza said the department has created a new award — the Medal of Valor — which could be awarded for extraordinary courage or outstanding performance by a department member. He speculated that the person earning that medal would likely incure a level of danger in the circumstances in which it would be awarded.

“This one (medal) may never even be awarded in the time that I’m in this office,” Carozza said. “It might never be awarded. The circumstances would have to be extraordinary.”

Carozza said anyone in the department can nominate anybody else for the various awards.

He said he plans to hold the awards ceremony twice a year henceforth.

Reporter Paul Locher can be reached at 330-682-2055, or e-mail plocher@the-daily-record.com.

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