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Award WinnersVALOR AWARDS
Corrections Program Coordinator Terry Tincknell of Marquette Branch Prison received a Valor Award for his actions on April 24, 2011. On that date, Tincknell saw a prisoner attack another prisoner in the auditorium. The assaulter was kicking the victim in the head and body and then began stabbing the defenseless victim in the head. Tincknell responded immediately, pushing the assaulter off the victim. His quick and decisive actions stopped the assault and likely saved the victim's life. Tincknell's behavior exemplifies the level of character and integrity for which the Department is proud.
Corrections Officer Jason Daniels of Thumb Correctional Facility was conducting a security round in the education building when he saw a teacher in a classroom suddenly assaulted by a prisoner. The prisoner had been hiding under a desk to prey on the teacher. Daniels immediately entered the classroom and gave the prisoner orders to stop. He complied and was restrained without incident. Officer Daniels saved the teacher from serious injury, assault, or death because of his actions while professionally controlling and de-escalating the situation.
Livingston County Probation/Parole Supervisor Daniel Chepeska was recognized in March 2011 by the Farmington Fire Department for his efforts in helping save a gentleman who suffered a cardiac arrest. Dan is an avid hockey player and was playing in January, when the victim basically collapsed on the ice. Because of the CPR training given to the MDOC employees, Dan was able to administer the AED. He was assisted by a second person. His recognition is another testimonial that basic first aid and CPR training really does pay off. He is proud knowing he saved a life.
About the incident, Dan commented to his coworkers, "I hope that none of you will ever have to use these skills that we have been trained in over the years, but we should all be confident that we have this knowledge. It will happen in the least expected instances. Thanks again for all of your support."
Dean Velmer, a Corrections Officer from Baraga Correctional Facility, was attending a high school graduation ceremony on May 27, 2011 when he heard a mother crying that her baby had stopped breathing. Velmer immediately took the baby from the parents and performed first aid including back blows and chest compressions to dislodge an airway obstruction. Velmer's actions demonstrate the level of integrity and professionalism our employees can be proud of.
Officers Torry Adamski, William Venegas, Zedrick Taylor, and Rodney Lee responded to a suicide attempt at Woodland Center Correctional Facility on May 23, 2011. A prisoner was hanging from a door with a sheet around his neck. Officers used a pair of cutting tools to cut through the sheet and remove it from the prisoner's neck. The prisoner was examined by health care and transported to a local health care facility for treatment. The officers worked together to save the prisoner's life, demonstrating an intense level of duty, professionalism and integrity.
Corrections Officer James Findlay of Carson City Correctional Facility was assigned to the visiting room when a prisoner approached him with his young son, who appeared to be choking. Findlay took the prisoner's son and administered abdominal thrusts. The action dislodged a piece of candy which had obstructed the child's airway, allowing the child to breathe again. Health care staff checked the child and determined he needed no further medical attention. Findlay displayed intense professionalism and compassion in the face of a stressful and life-threatening situation.
MERITORIOUS SERVICE AWARDS
Officer Earnest Skeans of Oaks Correctional Facility is always on the lookout for ways to improve facility safety. He has been involved in multiple incidents over the last several months concerning the safety and security of the facility. Late last fall, Skeans found a letter in a prisoner's possession describing plans for trafficking restricting medications. In December 2010, Skeans observed a prisoner acting oddly during a metal detector search, then searched the prisoner and found a weapon. In March, Skeans found that metal shelving units were being tampered with and weapons were being made from the missing pieces. The shelving was secured to ensure prisoners couldn't fashion more weapons. For his exemplary efforts, he received a Meritorious Service Award.
Marlene King, an employee at Woodland Center Correctional Facility received a Meritorious Service Award for her diligence in handling prisoner mail. King recognized a prisoner trying to get other prisoners to conspire together in a lawsuit concerning testimony. The information allowed the Attorney General to dismiss the case in question. King's efforts demonstrate the level of integrity each employee should strive to achieve.
General Office Assistant Jacqueline Massick of Saginaw Correctional Facility received a Meritorious Service Award for her actions on May 4, 2011. Massick was working in the mailroom at the facility when she noticed an outgoing envelope that had a contraband stamp addressed to Governor Snyder. The letter indicated the prisoner would harm others to bring attention to himself and referenced anthrax. It included a white powdery substance that had the scent and texture of talcum powder and was determined to be non-toxic. Massick's calm demeanor and professionalism during this stressful and potentially life-threatening situation allowed her to handle the situation efficiently and stopped an unnecessary emergency situation from occurring in the Governor's Office.
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