Some of county’s finest honored for brave actions

On Aug. 23, Shelby County Sheriff Chris Curry honored 19 department personnel who went above and beyond to serve the citizens of Shelby County.

All 19 changed lives for the better through their brave actions.

One honoree, deputy Jason Myrick, used deadly force to stop a suspect bent on running down U.S. marshals. Another, deputy Derek Dixon, received the Lifesaving Award for performing CPR and saving a 4-year-old boy who was found at the bottom of a pool.

Others saved local citizens from fires, rescued rape victims from their attackers, saved victims of car accidents from burning vehicles and got involved in medical emergencies such as choking or heart attacks.

Some officers even saved the lives of suspects and inmates, such as in the case of an inmate who attempted to commit suicide using the drawstring from the waistband of the clothes she was wearing. Corrections Sgt. Allen Thompson cut the string from around her neck, freeing her airway and saving her life.

Curry said the awards ceremony will become an annual one, a decision we applaud wholeheartedly.

The men and women who work for the Shelby County Sheriff’s Department routinely put their lives on the line to protect county residents. Although they consider such personal sacrifice just part of their jobs, they should know they are appreciated.

We hope all the honored officers wear their awards with pride, and we agree completely with the wise words Curry spoke during the ceremony: “We are blessed with the quality of the people at the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office. I don’t consider law enforcement as a job. It’s a calling, answered in so many ways by (officers) every day to make a difference in the lives of our citizens. These are the cream of the crop. They had to earn their place and they have to work every day to keep it.”

The We Say is the opinion of the Shelby County Reporter editorial board.