SHELTON - Washington Governor Chris Gregoire and State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste joined together on Tuesday, May 4 at the WSP Academy in Shelton to honor those WSP employees who have dedicated their careers to public service.
The 2010 Washington State Patrol Memorial Service and Award Ceremony honored the Patrol's fallen troopers, as well as current employees who distinguished themselves by extraordinary conduct during the previous year. "Today we honor the memory of those who gave their lives for the citizens of Washington," said Governor Gregoire. "But we also want to honor those who continue to serve, every day, to keep our citizens safe."
The presentation of the WSP's second highest award, the Medal of Courage, was awarded to Trooper Scott L. Johnson and Trooper Troy Giddings. According to Sgt. Freddy Williams, "The Medal of Courage is presented to an enforcement member who, while performing in the line of duty, is confronted with or involved in an extremely hazardous event in order to accomplish a legitimate police objective. The officer must have acted rationally and logically in determining his or her course of action, acted above and beyond the level of duty normally expected, and acted in accordance with the highest ideals of professional police service."
Chief Batiste said, "I am so pleased that we are able to celebrate these troopers' survival instead of honoring their memory."
Trooper Scott Johnson was awarded the Medal of Courage for his actions on
Feb. 13. After being shot in the head in downtown Long Beach, Trooper Johnson took action to protect himself and the tow truck driver from further attacks by the assailant.
Trooper Giddings was awarded the Medal of Courage for his actions on Sept. 2, 2008. Trooper Giddings was shot in the arm while positioning his patrol vehicle to observe a suspect who, unknown to Giddings at that time, had just killed six people - including Skagit County Deputy Anne Jackson. Because of his quick thinking he was able to direct the suspect to the troopers who were positioned to stop and arrest the suspect.
More than 50 other State Patrol employees were honored for achievements ranging from the recovery of stolen cars to exceptional performance in the Patrol's 911 centers.