By Nigel Slater 30/08 Updated: 30/08 12:53
TWO POLICE officers who made heroic attempts to save the lives of an elderly couple after a huge blaze in their Vale home have been honoured for their brave efforts.
PCs Ken and Lyn Hawkins, who are husband and wife, were honoured for going beyond the call of duty and their quick-thinking actions on the evening of Friday, February 17 when the serious fire broke out in Eckington.
On arrival the officers quickly obtained vital information from neighbours which allowed firefighters from Hereford and Worcester fire and Rescue Service to search the home where they found Valerie Herring laying unconscious.
Mr and Mrs Hawkins then assisted a paramedic in giving CPR to both Valerie and her unconscious husband William who had already been rescued from the burning house.
The pair then took turns with chest compressions and supported each other so that neither one of them would tire out and continued their efforts until the second ambulance's arrival.
After the couple were taken to hospital Mr and Mrs Hawkins then continued with their investigation which involved going into the damaged home to search for vital next of kin details.
Despite the officer's brave efforts on that night both Valerie and William died at Worcestershire Royal Hospital days after the fire broke out.
Evesham PC David Shortell was also recognised at the awards ceremony winning The Edward Sheldon MBE Memorial Trophy for his work within the community.
His award comes after setting up the Children's Kayak Charitable Trust which teaches youngsters to be responsible and self-confident through kayaking. So far up to 7,000 children have taken part in the project.
PC Shortell also provides training in rock climbing and outdoor pursuits as well as supporting the elderly and vulnerable with gardening campaigns.
The awards ceremony took place at West Mercia Police Headquarters at Hindlip Hall near Worcester and South Worcestershire police commander Supt Steve Cullen said the awards night had been a great success.
"This was our opportunity to reward the tremendous work carried out by my staff and to mark the efforts of those whose achievements have stood out as being extra special," he said.
"It was a terrific evening with the whole of the police family represented along with their families. And I would like to recognise them too for the support they provide."
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