April 7, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
ST. LOUIS COUNTY PRESENTS 911 LIFE SAVER AWARDS
The 911 Life Saver Awards will be presented at the St. Louis County Board Meeting on Tuesday, April 12, 2011 at 9:30 A.M. in the St. Louis County Board Room, 2nd Floor, St. Louis County Courthouse, 100 N. 5th Avenue West, Duluth, MN.
Since 1993, St. Louis County has recognized the efforts of those individuals who have worked together, often risking their own safety, to save the lives of others. Not only does the 911 Life Saver Award honor those worthy of such recognition, but it also provides valuable information to the public on how the County’s 911 system works.
The Life Saver Awards will be presented to 10 very deserving recipients for their individual efforts in 5 separate incidents that will be described in detail at the ceremony on Tuesday. The recipients are listed below along with a brief description of the event resulting in the award recognition:
911 Dispatcher Jeffrey Hunt:
On June 10th of 2010 Duluth Dispatcher Jeffrey Hunt received a 911 call from a Duluth resident reporting a possible medical emergency, exact location unknown. He stated that his sister and her 5 year old son were travelling across the country. The 5 year old had called the reporting party, his Uncle, by cell phone stating that they were pulled over to the side of the road and his mom would not wake up. The 5 year old was unable to tell his Uncle exactly where they were.
After several phone calls to relatives and the cell phone company and also with the help of fellow dispatchers and available technology, Jeffrey was able to ascertain that the mother and child were in the state of Georgia and was able to pinpoint their location. Through perseverance and teamwork, Jeffrey was able to get them the assistance they needed.
The victim and her family will be attending the ceremony.
Citizen Hero John Markas:
On an August day in 2010, Buhl city employee, John Markas, was driving home for lunch when he witnessed his neighbor, Wally Tiedeman, running from his garage covered in fire. Mr. Tiedeman had been working on a lawn mower when it backfired and caused an open container of gasoline nearby to explode. Mr. Tiedeman was doused with gasoline which then ignited.
Mr. Markas, reacting quickly, was able to snuff out the flames covering Mr. Tiedeman, call 911 for assistance and also put out the fire that had started in Mr. Tiedeman’s garage. He did so without hesitation or regard for his own safety and undoubtedly saved the life of his neighbor, Mr. Tiedeman.
Both victim and rescuer have indicated they will be attending the presentation.
Hibbing Police Department Officers Timothy Stauty, Shane Werneke and Citizen Hero William Bean:
On October 13, 2010, Mr. Bean, a St. Louis County employee in Veteran’s Services, was sitting in the office of a Hibbing CPA taking care of some American Legion business. The CPA, who had a history of heart problems, suddenly lost consciousness.
Mr. Bean started resuscitative measures while 911 was called. Officers Stauty and Werneke were first on the scene and continued CPR. After determining that the victim had no pulse or air movement, a shock was administered via an AED machine. By the time the ambulance arrived a few minutes later, the victim had a pulse and was breathing. He has recovered and is doing well thanks to the efforts of these Life Savers.
911 Dispatcher Brent Giesen:
On a January day in early 2011, Duluth Dispatcher Brent Giesen answered a 911 line and was immediately thrust into a very difficult situation. The caller was virtually unable to speak and Brent deduced that medical attention was necessary. As the caller was using a cell phone, her location was not immediately apparent but Brent was able to discern a single word which gave him a clue. He kept the phone line open continuing to try to solicit information from the caller while at the same time using the technology at the 911 Center to verify and pinpoint her location, which he was able to do. The responders arrived just in the nick of time.
As it turns out, the caller, in an apparent suicide attempt, had hanged herself but subsequently experienced a change of heart. Brent’s determination and resourcefulness gave this caller a second chance at life.
911 Dispatcher Paula Schneller, Citizen Heroes James Ostrander, Mark and Shanna Waters:
In January 2011, James Ostrander and a friend were driving over the Oliver Bridge returning home from a day of fishing. Suddenly the driver lost consciousness and slumped over the wheel. Mr. Ostrander, the passenger in the vehicle, was able to grab the wheel and pull the vehicle over. He was unable to find a pulse on the driver. Mr. Ostrander flagged down Mark and Shanna Waters who happened to be passing by. Mr. Waters dialed 911 and the call was received in the Duluth 911 Center by Dispatcher Paula Schneller. Paula gathered the necessary information for dispatch, entered the call for service, and then proceeded to give CPR instructions to Shanna Waters who relayed the information to her husband and Mr. Ostrander who both performed CPR on the victim.
The patient has recovered, is doing well and will be attending the presentation as will the rescuers.
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