SIDNEY — Sidney Police handed out the city’s Life Saving awards Monday evening during the Sidney City Council meeting.
Sidney Police Officer Bobby Benshoff and Sidney resident Pedro Anzaldo were honored with the Sidney Life Saving Award plaque and ribbon for their actions to help motorcyclist Noah Collins, who sustained serious injuries in a June 2021 crash.
Before explaining the background details which prompted this Life Saving Award, Police Chief Will Balling said when everyday officers arrive on the job, they never know what they will be facing. Sometimes it may be minor calls they respond to, but other times he said it is serious or tragic incident such as Collins’ crash for which duty calls.
“Today I am honored to present life saving awards to one of our officers and a citizen for their actions,” Balling said for the “appreciation for their quick thinking and willingness to make a difference. I am proud to be part of the Sidney Police department and work with our fine first responders and citizens who care about each other.”
Special recognition may be in order whenever an employee performs their duties in an exemplary manner, Balling said. He explained that any officer, employee, or supervisor may be recommended for an award by any department member. This will be done through the standard chain of command. These nominations may result from recommendations made to the supervisor by any other member of the department, the general public, or through the supervisor’s observations. Members of the command staff will review the nomination, and the chief of police will have the final authority to approve the recommendation.
On June 12, 2021, at 6:13 p.m., Sidney Police and Sidney Fire were dispatched to a crash with injuries at the intersection of Russell Road and Wapakoneta Avenue involving a white Honda Goldwing Motorcycle and a black Ford F150 truck. Benshoff, the first officer to arrive on the scene, observed motorcyclist Collins, of Sidney, had significant injuries to his lower left leg below his knee. Benshoff also noticed a citizen/Good Samaritan had placed a make shift tourniquet, using a belt, on the victim’s left leg above Collins’ injury. That citizen was later identified as Anzaldo.
Due to the severity of the injury, Benshoff placed his police department-issued tourniquet in the area of Collin’s upper left thigh/leg to place help prevent further blood loss, then assisted his attention to help reassure Collins until medics arrived.
Sidney Medics arrived on the scene and began treating Collins, and then transported him to Wilson Health’s emergency room. Collins was then taken by CareFlight to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton shortly after arriving at Wilson. Collins ended up having his lower left leg amputated below his knee, Balling said.
“Placement of the tourniquet with this type of injury helped stabilize Collins during the time it took to get him to the hospital. This quick action of Anzaldo and Benshoff,” Balling said, “helped save Collins from having more significant lifelong injuries, and may have possibly saved his life.”
Collins made his way up to the podium, wearing a new prosthetic leg and using a walker, to thank and hug Benshoff. At that time due to work responsibilities, Anzaldo had not arrived to the meeting yet.
“I just want to start by thanking you,” Collins said with emotion. “I honestly don’t what would have been the outcome if you weren’t there. I just will never forget what you said to me. I was laying there praying, and people were starting to freak out because I was closing my eyes, but I was just praying. And you told me, ‘I don’t know what you believe in, but I believe in an upper (power, pointing upward)’ and you said, ‘I will be praying for you.’ And I just will just never forget that and I can never thank you enough. …”
Balling handed Benshoff a plaque and ribbon. Council members and all present rose to give a loud round of applause. Benshoff thanked council, the city manager and the police department for his training, and also his wife for her support.
During a later part of the meeting, Anzaldo arrived. Although Collins and Benshoff had already left the meeting, Balling brought Anzaldo up to podium to also praise him for his actions during the incident and give him the same award. Balling told the crowd Anzaldo has a great attitude and is grateful for his willingness to help. He told Anzaldo the whole life saving incident began with him.
“Thank you so much. I’m glad to have helped save a life,” Anzaldo said.
Council and those in the crowd again raised from their seats to give another loud applause for Anzaldo, who said he had to return to work.
In final business, City Council went into an executive session to discuss possible investment or expenditure of public funds to be made in connection with an economic development project, and the employment of a public employee/official. No action was taken by council after members emerged from the session.
Council member Steven Klinger was absent Monday and was excused by council.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.