St. Johns County Sheriff David Shoar recognized many members of the Sheriff’s Office this evening at the 30th Annual Awards Banquet that was held at the World Golf Village Convention Center.
This year’s ceremony was a dedication to the late Sheriff Neil J. Perry.
Sheriff Shoar honored several deputies with the Combat Medal which is given to a deputy who was engaged in combat with an armed adversary. Receiving that award were Deputies Christopher E. Barnes, Stephen M. Conway, Thomas C. Coward, Ezekiel Kelly, Timothy B. Robertson, and Keith R. Schiffer.
The Deputy Guy White Award is named for the first known St. Johns County Deputy who was killed in the line of duty. Deputy White was gunned down while investigating a disturbance on a Florida East Coast passenger train on March 5, 1911. This award is given to a law enforcement or corrections deputy who has excelled in their position for the entire year and not for one single event. This year Deputy Greg Suchy was the recipient of the award.
Receiving the Captain Hazel McCormack Award was Mrs. Wanda Spradling. Mrs. Spradling is battling a long term illness and has been devoted to the members of the Sheriff’s Office. The award is given to a civilian employee of the Sheriff’s Office who has excelled in their position for the entire year as well.
The Neil J. Perry Leadership Award was presented to Lieutenant Shawn Lee.
Two awards were presented for the top Rookies of Corrections and Law Enforcement Deputies who excelled in their positions. The Joshua E. Blyler Award was given to Deputy Andrew Huskey and the Chris Dale Award was Corrections Deputy Thomas Harpe.
Receiving The Telecommunicator of the Year Award was Quanda Perry, receiving the Explorer Of The Year was Kyle Hayword and the Volunteer of the Year Award went to Oscar Patterson.
The final specialty award was the Abe Schneider Award that was presented to Jessica White, Ethan Ethridge, Grant Gamble, and Joseph Kersch. This award is given to citizens who have rendered aid or given assistance to a law enforcement officer or citizen. Schneider, a citizen of Espanola, was killed while assisting Deputy Guy White. White deputized Schneider to assist him with the disturbance involving the Carlton brothers.
The following individuals received the Exceptional Service Award which is given to a deputy who rendered service involving exceptional courage and grave personal danger in saving or attempting to save a life, or in resolving safely an immediate life-threatening situation. They were: Deputies Dwayne S. Cieslik (2), Spencer L. Craven, Jon B. Elliott, Eric M. Schoenfeld, Justus O. Self-Medlin, Justin W. Sisk, and Shane Tolerico.
Presented with the Lifesaving Award, that is given to an employee who rendered aid in saving a life, were: Lieutenant Larry L. Durden, Jr., Sergeants Armando M. Lopez, Jr. and Carl B. Taylor, Corporal Coby B. Seckinger, Deputies Todd J. Boger, Aaron L. Braddock, Stephen M. Conway, Jeffery L. Cook, Jaclyn J. Freda, Jamie M. Gambill, Ronald L. Hines, Jr., Matthew Hobbs, Scott A. Stokes, and Gerald R. Thompson.
The Meritorious Service Award is presented to an employee who in the line of duty through diligence, unusual thoroughness or perseverance has performed a difficult task, in which the aims of law enforcement were furthered. Those receiving that award included: Commander Thomas V. Quintieri, Lieutenant Shawn Lee, Sergeants Kevin J. Cronin, Joseph C. Parker, and David J. Tarbert, Corporal Gregory T. Suchy, Deputies Ermon L. Bentley,
Cheyenne A. Fortner, Jason E. Kroul, Steven M. Lay, Casey A. Romein, Joseph C. Romer, Charles K. Simpkiss, and Mr. Ronald B. Nelson, Jr.
The Sheriff’s Unit Award is presented to a unit, section or team that has performed their duties in an excellent manner throughout the year. This year the Security Threat Intelligence Team received the award. Those accepting included; Lieutenants Larry L. Durden, Jr. and Darren M. Kaelin, Sergeants Jason R. Benton, Myron K. Evans, Armando M. Lopez, Jr., and Keith L. Melton, Corporal Edward R. Martinez, Deputies Russell M. Burns, Jr., John W. Hagberg, Stephen P. Jensen, Joseph F. Lukaszewksi, III, Ricardo M. Rios, and Mrs. Kristi A. Briggs.
The Sheriff’s Commendation Award is given to an employee whose conduct and actions reflect highly and favorably on the individual and the Sheriff’s Office. Those receiving the Sheriff’s Commendation Award were: Sergeants Ryan J. Smith, Michael A. Strausbaugh, Detectives Samantha L. English, Frank S. Ferris, III, Von A. McKenzie, Robert M. Taylor, Deputies Ermon L. Bentley, Diane M. DelBuono, Thomas H. Evans, Thomas E. Harpe, Andrew M. Huskey, Krista M. Kirk, Jason E. Kroul, Charles K. Simpkiss, Melissa A. Swindull, Mr. John E. Birdwell, Ms. Jamie K. Davis, PSAs Michael C. Maietta, Ms. Ericka S. Masters, Ms. Jamil A. Ortiz-Kamel, Ms. Crystal G. Pasley, Mr. Oscar Patterson, Ms. Quanda L. Perry, Mrs. Wanda L. Spradling
Undersheriff Rick Look (Flagler County) received an award titled the Legacy Award. This is given out to individuals who have devoted a lifetime of commitment in the law enforcement profession and has held leadership positions throughout their career that have had a substantive and positive impact on the law enforcement community.
Finally four individuals received a Community Partnership award from Sheriff Shoar for their efforts in advancing and assisting law enforcement. They were Rick Brewster, Mark Conrad, Jacques Klempf, Tom Manno, and Brent Woods.
Photo credits: © 2014 Historic City News contributed photograph by Dawn Chapman