The Richmond County Sheriff's Office is recognizing its heroes. Before, awards were only given at the end of the year... but now, they're handing them out right after someone goes above and beyond the call of duty. Jillian Benfield explains why the Sheriff's Office says this is improving the department.
All of his life, Deputy Christian Gandy says he's had a calling.
"It's a passion, it's something you have to know on the inside and know in your heart that you want to do this job."
He's only been on the road for 6 months, but now wears one of the Richmond County Sheriff's Office's highest honors: Saving A Life Award.
Gandy, along with his partner, responded to a hit and run accident on Tobacco Road. The victim was heavily bleeding from his neck.
"I was scared for his life, there was times when he was going in and out of consciousness and I was scared we were going to lose them right then and there."
The deputies acted fast... applying pressure to the man's wound.
Lt. Lewis Blanchard is with the Sheriff's Office.
"For a person, to go at his own risk to place his hands on somebody who is bleeding profusely, knowing that there could possibly be danger to himself if he has a cut or anything, that's certainly above and beyond.
Lt. Blanchard says the Sheriff's Office is holding award ceremonies more often, not just at the end of the year as it was done in the past. He says it's the right thing to do and morale booster for the department.
"A government entity, you can't reward them monetarily, you can't give them a vacation, so basically you can do things that allow them to be seen in front of their peers and other persons that they've done a great job."
Gandy says although he doesn't think of himself as a hero...the award is good motivation to keep going above the call of duty.
"We put on this uniform every day to protect the citizens of Richmond county and Augusta, it's part of our job it's what we do ma'am."
Deputy Gandy's partner, Matthew Mealing, also received the life saving award.
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