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Lifesaving medals awarded to OPD Personnel

Several personnel from the Oakdale Police Department were formally recognized and awarded the Department’s Lifesaving Medal by Police Chief Scott Heller at Monday evening’s July 17 City Council Meeting for incidents in which they took prompt and unselfish action leading to saving the life of another. On July 4, 2016, while vacationing with his family at Lake Hogan, Officer Richard Plath noticed a male subject in the lake who was having difficulty keeping his head above water. Officer Plath swam out to the male’s location and while diving beneath the water, he was able to locate the subject, pull him to the surface, and tow him safely to shore. Officer Plath’s quick and selfless actions were instrumental in saving the life of another.

On May 15, 2017, Dispatcher Serena Van Dyke received an emergency medical call of a 69-year-old male who was possibly in cardiac arrest. She dispatched units, relaying pertinent information to the responding officers. Sergeant Keri Sturges and Officer Andrew Stever were first on scene. They quickly assessed the victim’s condition and found him unresponsive and breathing erratically. They immediately began administering CPR, assessing the victim’s breathing and pulse until emergency medical staff arrived. The prompt and collective actions of Sergeant Sturges, Officer Stever and Dispatcher Van Dyke resulted in assisting to save the man’s life.


The Department’s Lifesaving Medals were awarded to Sergeant Keri Sturges, Officer Andrew Stever, Dispatcher Serena Van Dyke and Officer Richard Plath for actions taken that resulted in the prompt and unselfish act of rendering aid to another that resulted in the saving of a life.