by Dennis Dalman
The stork was late, but just in the nick of time three Sartell police officers arrived to save the day and do the stork’s business – helping deliver a healthy baby.
Those three officers were among five honored at the Sept. 14 Sartell City Council for performing excellent police work. Those three were given the “Stork” award; two others were given the “Lifesaving Award” by Sartell Police Chief Jim Hughes.
At 9:45 p.m. Aug. 26, the police department received an emergency call from the 600 block of Pinecone Road regarding a 33-year-old woman, nine months pregnant, who didn’t think she would be able to make it safely in time to the hospital to deliver her baby. Within minutes, the three officers arrived, and the birth was in progress. They grabbed the obstetrics kit in one of their vehicles. The baby – a girl – arrived quite rapidly, 15 minutes after the officers arrived at the scene. They suctioned out the baby’s nose and mouth, then placed the baby on her mother’s chest and administered oxygen to her until Gold Cross ambulance arrived. Mother and daughter were transported to the hospital and are doing just fine.
At the council meeting, Hughes praised the officers for their quick thinking in “helping bring a new life into this world.” Hughes pinned a medal on each man’s shirt. They were also presented with award plaques from Gold Cross Ambulance Service and from the City of Sartell.
The three – John Lester, Sgt. Kelly Mader, Steve Mathews — were given a standing ovation in the council chambers.
Two other officers – Kari Bonfield and Rob Lyon – were also honored for saving the life of a man who was undergoing cardiac arrest.
At 4:13 p.m. Aug. 24, the officers arrived at a resident where an 89-year-old man was unresponsive in a recliner chair. They started chest compressions while talking with the man’s wife, who was so upset at one point she tripped over the family dog and fell down and hit her head. The officers also tended to her while the other inserted a tube into the man’s airway. They were about to try a defibrillator to get the man’s heart started again, but twice the defibrillator’s electronic read-out advised not to give a shock, so the officers took turns doing CPR until the ambulance arrived.
The man lived through that crisis, but unfortunately he passed away 17 days later. His family expressed their gratitude to the police for helping them have 17 more days with their loved one – a husband and father.
Hughes praised them for their professionalism and for doing exactly what police are supposed to do – helping people in times of stress and emergencies.
Sartell Mayor Sarah Jane Nicoll presented the two officers with plaques and Hughes pinned them with the Lifesaving Award. They, too, were given a standing ovation.