By Megan Baynes
Officers Frank Crosby of Holden, and Robert Noonan Jr of Webster have been recognized for their brave actions at the scene of a fiery crash that took place in July 2014.
They have received the Medal of Valor Award from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security. This is awarded to any correctional employee who demonstrates actions above and beyond the call of duty, disregarding the potential for danger to themselves.
Crosby is a 25 year veteran and Noonan a 14 year veteran with the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office.
On July 14, 2014 Officer Crosby and Officer Noonan, while transporting three inmates to the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office, observed a vehicle rollover on the median strip of interstate 495. In response, the officers immediately activated the emergency lights, stopped the transportation van to clear the left lane for emergency responders and contacted 911.
Officer Noonan than ran to the vehicle and observed the operator was inextricably trapped and that fire had broken out. With the vehicle fully engulfed, Officer Noonan retrieved fire extinguishers and water bottles from Officer Crosby as well as concerned bystanders which then brought the fire under control.
Unfortunately, the vehicle operator died from his injuries sustained during the accident. However, no additional injuries were incurred that day due to the rapid response of Officers Crosby and Noonan to control the scene.
“The actions taken by Officers Frank Crosby & Robert Noonan on the day of July 14, 2014 are nothing short of heroic and embody the spirit of the Medal of Valor awards they received,” Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis said. “It takes an incredible amount of courage to run towards that sort of fiery scene.”
“This truly is an example of correctional officers going above and beyond the call of duty,” he continued. “They represent a true officer and we are all very proud of what they did.”