26 heroes honored for life-saving efforts

May 20, 1994|By Ed Heard | Ed Heard,Sun Staff Writer

Twenty six emergency workers, rescue teams and Good Samaritans were honored for saving lives and serving as the "backbone" of Maryland's medical system yesterday afternoon.

More than 100 people attended the 10th annual awards ceremony at the Shock Trauma Center auditorium in downtown Baltimore. The event was sponsored by the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services.

The youngest honoree was 10-year-old Christopher Roberts. Last July, the Eastpoint boy performed the Heimlich maneuver on his 40-year-old father, Curtis, who was chocking on pizza. The child said he imitated what he saw his father teaching others in a CPR course.

"I feel good about what I did, else I wouldn't have a father now," said Christopher, hugging his father.

lTC The heroes received wooden plaques for their life-saving efforts this year and last. Their quick thinking rescued victims from life-threatening circumstances until other emergency workers could arrive, medical officials said.

The honorees yesterday included two Talbott County Natural Resources Police officers who rescued a suspected poacher from a submerged vehicle he had driven into the Wye River; a 15-year-old Clarksville boy who used lessons learned as a Boy Scout to aid his father and two friends within a four-month period last year; and an Oakland store clerk who joined a retired volunteer firefighter to revive a heart attack victim.

"The sense of responsibility you all show for your fellow citizens has unfortunately become a rare commodity," said Donald L. DeVries, Jr., chairman of the Emergency Medical Services Board.

The institute coordinates emergency medical services -- including state helicopter response and training -- for the state. There are more than 31,000 state certified prehospital care providers in Maryland.

"You don't do this for the recognition, you do it because of what's in your heart," said Battalion Chief Donald Howell of the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services. Chief Howell was given a distinguished service award for his 26-year career in emergency medical services.

Some of the heroic deeds honored were acts of altruism, others were a call to duty.

Eight rescue squads from St. Mary's County were recognized for their work rounding up crew members of the El Toro II, a charter fishing boat that sank in the Chesapeake Bay on Dec. 5.

Theresa Shipe, who survived the accident, thanked emergency workers at yesterday's ceremony. .

"If I didn't have all of you, I wouldn't be here," Ms. Shipe said, recalling her airlift from the cold water.

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