Police officers receive Heinz Awards for going beyond the call
Pittsburgh police Officers Angie Lane and Matthew Smith charged into a Knoxville apartment in February to find Donovan McKee bloodied, unconscious, with no pulse.
The boy, 11, suffered a brutal nine-hour beating from his mother's boyfriend because he refused to vacuum.
Lane administered rescue breathing while Smith performed chest compressions. Donovan showed signs of life and was rushed to the hospital, but he died.
“It was definitely an emotional day,” said Smith, 33. “I have nephews that age, so it really hit home.”
Lane, 24, said the experience was traumatic, but her fellow officers have taken care of her.
“I was most comforted that in the child's final moments he was surrounded by people who truly cared for his well-being,” she said.
Lane and Smith were among nearly two dozen police officers from across Allegheny County to be recognized on Friday for going beyond the call of duty at the 12th annual Senator John Heinz Law Enforcement Awards Day luncheon in the Sheraton Hotel at Station Square. About 400 police officers, family members and elected officials attended.
The awards ceremony, which honored officers from suburban, university and city police departments, is a way to show appreciation for what officers do every day, said Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl.
“As an average citizen, it's really difficult to put into words the appreciation we feel,” Ravenstahl said.
Others who received awards:
• A lieutenant, sergeant and eight officers from the University of Pittsburgh Police Department received the 911 Quick Response Award for their heroics on March 8 when an armed graduate student opened fire inside Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Oakland, killing one and injuring five before the officers fatally shot him.
• New Kensington police Patrolman Anthony Grillo received the Above and Beyond Award for his actions as the first officer to arrive after a fugitive fatally shot Lower Burrell Patrolman Derek Kotecki on Oct. 12, 2011.
• Monroeville police Detectives James Hredzak and Jon Pawlowski received the Crime Doesn't Pay Award for busting a drug ring and recovering hundreds of thousands of dollars.
• Pittsburgh police Officers Lawrence Connolly and Brendan Nee received the Starsky & Hutch Award for rescuing a man who jumped into the Monongahela River from the Birmingham Bridge in August.
Nee tracked the man's location from the shore while Connolly flagged down a boat and rescued the man.
Nee, 26, praised the boater who allowed them to use his boat before River Rescue arrived. Connolly, 29, said they didn't really think about the potential danger to themselves.
“The first thing we knew we needed to do was to get him to safety,” he said.
Adam Brandolph is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-391-0927 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- 2 longtime Pittsburgh nonprofits agree to merge
- Jury finds Beltzhoover man who shot 60-year-old woman in the eye guilty of attempted homicide
- PennDOT to begin changing Glenbury Street Friday, part of Route 51/ 88 intersection rehab
- Starkey: Pederson had to go at Pitt
- Twins keep trains on track at Western Pa. malls
- West Virginia man dies after being shot with arrow in Wellsburg
- West Virginia notebook: Trickett cleared to play in bowl game
- Steelers, young and old, thirst for opportunity to reach the postseason
- Penguins’ Crosby details his mumps experience
- Inspections will force Liberty Bridge lane closures on Friday
- Pederson’s 2nd tenure as Pitt AD comes to abrupt end