Two officers with the Greenwood Police Department were presented with the prestigious South Carolina Police Chief’s Association Life Saving Award at this past Monday’s meeting of City Council.
Lt. Travis Anderson and PFC Wesley McClinton were presented the award for their actions on Nov.16, 2012, by GPD Chief of Police Gerald Brooks. Anderson has been with GPD for nine years, McClinton for 18 months.
Both officers were among the first to respond to a home on Moss Creek Ln. after receiving a 911 call about a shooting. When the officers entered the home, they saw the victim, 21-year-old Tavaris K. Lester, lying face down on the floor with multiple gunshot wounds. While other officers secured the residence, Anderson and McClinton, both of whom have first aid and trauma training outside of the police department, began treating the victim.
Lester had no pulse when Anderson and McClinton arrived. While Anderson attempted to stop the bleeding from the wounds, McClinton began chest compressions. After several minutes of performing CPR, Lester regained a pulse. EMS arrived at that point and took over treatment before transporting Lester to Self Regional Healthcare. Lester remained alive for another week before succumbing to his injuries.
Chief Brooks told those gathered at the council meeting that Lester would not have had any chance at all had the officers not acted quickly and decisively to begin treatment.
Chief Brooks submitted the two officers for the award to the SCPCA and received confirmation this month that the honor had been approved. But for the two officers, it was not an honor at all.
“Honestly, we didn’t do anything special,” Anderson said. “We were just doing our job, what we have been trained to do. It’s what we will do when faced with the situation again.”