Last Saturday, tragedy struck the City of Bellevue, when two people were killed and two others were critically injured by a gunman at a local Sonic drive thru.
While the city and Bellevue Police Department work through the difficult situation, they wanted to say thank you to the nearby agencies who came to their aid that night.
“We just have to stop and take a look at who our partners are and thank them for being there," said Bellevue Police Chief Kenneth Clary.
First responders from La Vista, Papillion, Omaha, Sarpy County, Douglas County, the Nebraska State Patrol, the ATF and the FBI were all recognized Tuesday night for their help.
One La Vista officer, who was working as a medic with the Sarpy Tactical Medical Team also known as STacMed, received a special honor for saving the life of 25-year-old Kenneth Gerner.
Officer Karl Meister says with the help of other agencies, he was able to quickly begin treating Gerner. Doctors later confirmed that it was the on-scene treatment that saved the man’s life.
Meister was honored by the Bellevue Police Department with a certificate recognizing his work, the department’s challenge coin and a lifesaving pin to wear on his uniform. Meister is the first officer outside the Bellevue Police Department to be awarded that pin.
“I appreciate the attention on our group. STacMed is a relatively new thing,"Meister said. "We’re fortunate for the recognition. Ultimately, I was there to do a job- a job that I love and a job that I’ve trained for and a job that I instruct for our academy. So I was oddly thankful for the opportunity that I was there and willing to do what I was called to do.”
Meister says the STacMed team will be using the experience to better train their officers.