Two Shiloh Police officers, Officers Bradley Blake and Mark Geyer, received Lifesaving Awards for going above and beyond the call of duty in early October at Wilke Window and Door. Shiloh Chief of Police Jim Stover presented the duo their awards on Nov. 28, just before the chief retired.
“It is without question that Officers Blake and Geyer saved the patient’s life, and for that heroism, we award them the department’s Life Saving Award. Had it not been for the immediate and professional actions of (the officers), I fear this positive outcome would have been very tragic,” Stover said.
“This is one of the events that are outstanding, and something I really enjoy presenting to the public and the citizens of Shiloh because it represents some of the positive and very great deeds that our officers do and contribute to this community.”
Steve Wilke, of Wilke Window and Door, presented the officers with honorary awards of recognition, gift certificates and donated $1,000 to Backstoppers in their names. Norman Wilke, Steve’s father, also attended.
“I was there that day this happened. Friday, Oct. 7, started out like any normal day at Wilke Window and Door, and then suddenly, at a moment’s notice it turned very tragic. We had two construction workers saw through an electrical line, a hot wire, and then all hell broke loose, and we were calling 911, and there you were — you saved the day, in like two minutes or less — it’s amazing,” Steve Wilke said. “Thank you.”
Terry Lewis, the construction worker, had been utilizing an industrial concrete saw which was water cooled. The worker was cutting into the crawl space wall of an existing building when it is believed the saw came into contact with an electrical line, resulting in his electrocution.
Stover said, “Lewis was lying in a large pool of water that was approximately 6 inches deep from his waist to his feet with an active electrical current.”
Officers Blake and Geyer immediately climbed into to 4-foot deep construction hole where the worker was found unconscious, Stover said.
The worker was not breathing and did not show signs of life, and without concern for their own safety, Officers Blake and Geyer located a canvas tie down strap which was then wrapped around the worker’s wrist and pulled him away from the water and source of electricity.
“Working in tandem, Officer Geyer started CPR while Officer Blake readied the AED machine. Shortly after starting CPR the patient was heard to take a deep breath and a pulse was found. Officer Geyer and Officer Blake continued to attend to the patient until the arrival of the O’Fallon Shiloh Ambulance and Paramedics,” Stover explained.
Lewis was transported to Memorial Hospital where he received care for several days before being released.
On Friday, Dec. 2, Lewis visited the Shiloh Police department to meet and thank the two officers who saved his life.
Interim Chief of Police Gary McGill said, “Lewis wanted to meet them and thank them. He didn’t remember anything from the day the accident happened, so he came by to see Officer Blake and Geyer last week.”
Shiloh Mayor Jim Vernier congratulated the officers.
“These officers did some really great work that day,” Vernier said.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the accident, according to a previous BND report.
Kaitlyn Schwers contributed to this report.