Honoring Everyday Heroes

Tuesday night was one of my favorite council meetings of the year — our chance to honor our police officers, emergency medical workers and citizens for going above and beyond in keeping our community safe, solve crimes and save lives.

People like this …

Mr. Devlin Mcelwee & Mr. Oscar Knapp – nominated by Officer Daniel Fournier

On November 19, 2016 in the early morning hours Mr. Mcelwee & Mr. Knapp were traveling on Lake Drive in South Milwaukee when they observed a vehicle crash into a tree.  The gentlemen immediately stopped their vehicle and went to assist the driver of the crashed vehicle.  While they were attempting to free the driver from the vehicle it started on fire.  By the time the two men freed the driver and moved him to a safe location the engine compartment of the vehicle was fully engulfed in flames.  The officers who arrived on scene stated their actions saved the driver’s life.

And this …

Lt. Rotter, Investigator Olson, Investigator Rivamonte, Officer Fournier, Officer Schwehr and Mr. Brian Tommet – nominated by Captain Jaske & Lt. Rotter

On February 22, 2017 in the early morning hours Mr. Tommet observed what he believed to be suspicious activity at the You Pump Gas Station located at 1715 10th Avenue.  Mr. Tommet observed two males walking around the closed gas station and alerted the South Milwaukee Police Department.  Unknown to Mr. Tommet these two subjects had just burglarized the business.  Because of Mr. Tommet’s swift action in calling the Police Department immediately officers responded to the scene quickly and after an in-depth investigation were able to identify one suspect.  This suspect’s arrest and subsequent confession assisted in the closure of several gas station and pharmacy burglaries throughout the Milwaukee and Waukesha County area. 

Without Mr. Tommet and the solid work of Officers Fournier and Schwehr, Lt. Rotter & Investigators Olson and Rivamonte in this case, the department would not have had anything other than another burglary with little to no leads.    The result of their team work concluded with a dangerous felon being removed from the streets. 

And this …

Mr. Christopher Rodriguez – nominated by Officer David Hoeppner

On June 13, 2016 at approximately 3:03 am Mr. Rodriguez observed a residence on fire in the 2400 block of Nicholson Avenue.  Mr. Rodriguez immediately went to the residence and began pounding on the doors to awaken the residents.  Through Mr. Rodriguez’s actions all the occupants of the residence were able to safely evacuate the residence.  Mr. Rodriguez then called 911 to alert emergency personnel and then began trying to extinguish the fire by using a garden hose to apply water.  Both the Police & Fire Departments responded to the residence and took over fire suppression efforts.  Because of Mr. Rodriguez’s quick actions all six occupants of the residence were saved. 

And this …

Mr. Jacob Klingforth – nominated by Officer Steve Streicher

On March 13, 2017 as Mr. Klingforth was traveling in South Milwaukee he observed a subject laying on a sidewalk who appeared to be in need of help.  Mr. Klingforth immediately took action and went to assist this subject.  The subject was pulseless and not breathing.  Mr. Klingforth activated 911 emergency services and began CPR until assistance arrived.  Even after medical personnel arrived on the scene and assumed patient care Mr. Klingforth remained at the scene and assisted the officers who responded.  Mr. Klingforth’s care and compassion for this subject is commendable.       

Check out the full list of police award winners here.

Congratulations to everyone who was honored, and thanks for stepping up. It takes all of us to make and keep our communities safe.

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