Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Deputy John Durbin, Our Spotsylvanian Hero Brought a Man Back to Life!

From the Free Lance-Star:

Spotsylvania County Deputy John Durbin worked for the rescue squad for 10 years before he took a job at the Sheriff's Office.

But in all the time he spent in the ambulance, he never experienced anything like Monday morning.

In the early hours Monday, he saved a man's life.

Durbin was working night patrol, driving down Courthouse Road toward Fredericksburg when he saw the car behind him flashing its lights about 1 a.m.

He pulled over into the Extreme Power Sports parking lot.

So did the other car.

As he walked up to the passenger window, he heard a woman's voice. "Please help my husband. He's having a heart attack."

Durbin said he immediately pulled the nonresponsive man from the passenger seat.

"I grabbed him by both arms, and he had no pulse and he wasn't breathing," Durbin said of the 59-year-old Maryland man.

Durbin ran to his patrol car for an automated external defibrillator, which is used to
send a shock into someone experiencing heart failure. {MORE...}

Sometimes I focus on financial aspects of our government because that's the state of our lives and most everything revolves around cash lately. We fund people we're supposed to be able to trust with it to give us a service, and all to often, it's squandered or poorly spent on non-core service items.

It's refreshing to come across a story that makes me feel that my tax money is actually being invested back into the community {-cough- saving lives} via righteous core government services, and not just spent {-cough- planning department! ... regulating bureaucracy for the sake of big government- cough- $250,000 school superintendent salary}.

This deputy could have certainly done a lot of things 'other' than what he did, but he chose to adhere to his baseline training values that include actual public service and actual public protection. Hmmm... "Protect and Serve" ... I've heard of that somewhere before.

Thanks to Deputy John Durbin's being in the right place at the right time – and having the proper training already ingrained in him from a decade of other public service – a Maryland man is alive today, and his quick-thinking wife has a breathing husband still.

Thanks also to Sheriff Smith and whomever else from the chain of command (past or present) who saw fit to equip the vehicle with the lifesaving tools our deputies need to perform the highest level of service possible and within reason of expense. Truly, a defibrillator is a wise use of funds (you might ease up on the fancy decals and chrome roof accessories on the next round of cars though!)

This is the type of equipment I want to see my Sheriff arguing for more of during any budget cycle. You can shelve the proposal for department jet skis, auto-chalk cars, helicopters, red light cameras and more radar guns for a while as far as I'm concerned- but send everybody to EMT level 10 classes and I'll lobby right along side of you for more funding!

And thanks to the personnel department for hiring a deputy who brings to the job a proven track record of public service and a skill set that goes above law enforcement requirements! This deputy chooses to focus his life of public service back on the citizens' needs, not merely the law's text and authority.

Some department clerks who process applications may have counted that against him.

A Sheriff's office can, and often does hire 'tough guys' and doesn't balance the force with officers who are there to do more than just catch bank robbers and drug lords like in the movies.

Spotsy has its share of G.I. Joes like any law enforcement department (and we need them), but I now choose to think of the Spotsylvania Sheriffs Deputies as having a more compassionate sense of public service intentions – with a higher level of training– than I previously knew of.

Deputy Durbin has set the bar much higher for the rest of the patrol deputies and I hope his brothers in blue acknowledge his heroic act and encourage even higher standards of perfection in all areas of training so this type of behavior becomes a common occurrence.

The next time I see Deputy Durbin in public, I'm buying this man a coffee and donut! You should too, but at least tell him THANK YOU as I plan to.

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