Recognize Heroism and Valor

VFW awards two Louisiana officers for saving a man’s life

VFW Commander-in-Chief Hal Roesch on Sept. 4 presented the VFW Life Saving Award to two Louisiana deputies for saving a man’s life in late June.

Roesch presented the award to St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies Alexis Agnelly and Paul Quick at the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Department in Luling, La. Since 2013, VFW has honored some of America’s first responders with the VFW Life Saving Award.

VFW presents to Sheriff's Deputies with awardsOn June 29, Agnelly and Quick were assigned to investigate a domestic disturbance involving a man near the Mississippi River in St. Rose, about 20 miles east of New Orleans. There, the deputies encountered a man who was “acting erratically” while walking on a levee near the river. He was sweating heavily and speaking irrationally. The officers determined it was a case of “excited delirium.”

The man tried to run away from the deputies by entering the river, but Agnelly and Quick chased and restrained the man in the shallow waters before he could potentially seriously injure or kill himself, according to a report of the incident.

“Our training allowed us to recognize that the subject we were dealing with was not in his proper mindset, which meant our tactics needed to change in order to safely de-escalate the situation,” Agnelly told the St. Charles Herald-Guide. “Once we had the subject safely in custody, we were able to utilize our de-escalation training in order to calm him down and ensure him that we were going to get him the help he needed.”

While on official business to assist with recovery efforts from Hurricane Laura, Roesch met and awarded Agnelly and Quick. He said they are “living examples” of what first responders must be for communities across the country.

“Their selflessness, heroism and valor displayed at a moment’s notice to help save lives, is not only a testament to their character as deputies of the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office, but as caring and dedicated citizens of this great community,” Roesch said. 

After receiving the award, Agnelly and Quick told Roesch they were only doing their job and thanked VFW for the award. Agnelly said she was “very appreciated” of being recognized by VFW.

“I am a resident of this parish, and it means the world to me to serve its citizens and work for such a great department," said Agnelly.

Quick agreed with Agnelly.

“There's no greater feeling than to serve as a police officer,” Quick said.