Louisiana State Police honors troopers and civilians with annual awards

Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Louisiana State Police held its annual awards ceremony on Friday, May 19 to honor troopers, public safety personnel, and civilians for going above and beyond the call of duty.

The ceremony was held Friday morning at the LSP Training Academy Auditorium on Independence Blvd. in Baton Rouge. Many examples of bravery, dedication, and exceptional work ethic were acknowledged during the ceremony.

Not only were troopers celebrated for their accomplishments, but civilians were as well. "Unlike law enforcement officers, who are sworn and commissioned to protect the public and respond to tragedies, these civilians have no oath to do that and for them to step forward out of a love for their fellow man is just truly extraordinary," said Colonel Kevin Reeves, Interim Superintendent of LSP.

Take for instance John LaBruzzo and Jasen Eastwold, who during the early morning of August 12, 2016, left Metairie to save families in Central, but ended up being commissioned by LSP to single-handedly save hundreds stranded on I-12. "They saw our truck, well Jason's truck, and they asked if we could help them," said LaBruzzo.

The military style truck, nicknamed "the big truck," has been part of the Eastwold family for seven years. Jasen says he had no idea its use would go beyond the regular joy rides. "I didn't realize what we were really getting into. It was gratifying to save these folks," said Eastwold.

The friends say at times, the harsh rain prevented them from seeing the road. "The waters were so high they were actually coming over his deuce and a half truck," recalled LaBruzzo.

But they pushed forward, making at least 30 trips in the big rig, which holds 50 people. "He had the vehicle, we both had the will and determination, so we were gonna' be there until the state trooper said that we'd gotten everybody that they needed us to get," said LaBruzzo.

Also honored was Robert Guiloroy, who shares that compassion. It was after midnight on November 6, 2016, when he drove up to a car on fire on the interstate near Fenton. "I immediately slammed on my brakes and by my surprise, I pulled out an infant."

Guiloroy went on to save four other kids and their mom. He sustained second-degree burns in the process. He says he wouldn't change a thing. "Do unto others as you'd have done unto you, and that's why I would want someone to do for me in that situation. Do everything they can, without hesitation," said Guiloroy.

Awards presented are as follows:

  • Lifesaving Award – Awarded for any act which results in saving or sustaining the life of a person
    • Sgt. Derrick Stewart (Troop B)
    • DPS Sergeant Chris Pesson (Crescent City Connection)
    • Senior Trooper David Easley (Troop B)
    • Senior Trooper Robert Powell (Troop L)
    • Master Trooper Shawn Boyd (Troop B)
    • Master Trooper Stacy Cole (Troop E)
    • Master Trooper Michael Linton (Troop F)
    • Trooper First Class Eric Thaxton (Troop N)
    • Trooper Santiago St. Clair (Troop B)
    • Robert Guillory (Civilian)
    • Josh Burns (Civilian)
  • Service Injury Award – Awarded for significant injuries incurred while acting within the scope of official duty
    • Trooper Carlos Pineda (Troop N)
  • Richard Honeycutt Award – Awarded for outstanding service and dedication to duty by a Communications Officer
    • Communications Officer 3 Shanga Hill
  • DPS Officer of the Year – Awarded for consistent display of outstanding qualities that exemplify a member of the Department of Public Safety
    • Name withheld due to undercover criminal investigative work
  • Plainclothes Trooper of the Year – Awarded for consistent display of outstanding qualities that exemplify a member of the Louisiana State Police
    • Name withheld due to undercover criminal investigative work
  • Uniformed Trooper of the Year – Awarded for consistent display of outstanding qualities that exemplify a member of the Louisiana State Police
    • Trooper Brady Johnson (Troop I)
  • Blue Max Award – Awarded for the most recovered stolen vehicles with arrests in a 12-month period
    • Trooper First Class Archibald Forsyth (Troop A)
    • Trooper Jack Uhle (Troop N)
  • Meritorious Service Award – Awarded for performance of duty that exceeds the normal expectations of duty and demonstrates an exceptional degree of good judgment, initiative, and competence
    • Trooper Allen Jackson (Troop E)
    • Master Trooper Scott Coco (Troop E)
    • Trooper First Class Chance Guilliams (Troop E)
    • Sergeant Michael Nugent (Troop E)
    • Senior Trooper Jason Martel (Troop E)
    • Trooper Travis Luken (Troop L)
    • Trooper Jarrod Miles (Troop C)
    • Master Trooper Rodger Cason (Troop G)
    • Senior Trooper Brent Peart (Troop G)
    • Trooper First Class George “Trey” Strickland (Troop G)
    • Trooper First Class Matthew Titus (Troop G)
    • Senior Trooper Herman Newell (Troop L)
    • Trooper Jack Uhle (Troop N)
    • Trooper Michael Mercante (CID Region 1 – Hammond)
    • Trooper Munish Tanwar (Troop N)
    • Trooper Monroe Dillon (CID Region 1 – New Orleans)
    • Trooper Dereck Clark (Troop N)
    • Trooper Kipp Fellon (Troop N)
    • Trooper Carlos Pineda (Troop N)
    • Trooper First Class Eric Thaxton (Troop N)
    • Trooper Justin Rice (CID Region 2 – Houma)
    • Senior Trooper John Martinez (Transportation Safety Services - Metairie)
    • Trooper First Class Douglas Thompson (Troop A)
    • Trooper Brian Melvin (Troop B)
    • Trooper Jonathan James (Troop C)
    • Sergeant Brett Travis (Troop D)
    • Master Trooper Byron Juneau (Troop E)
    • Trooper First Class Frank Kuba (Troop G)
    • Master Trooper Patrick Dunn (Troop L)
    • DPS Officer Gailand “PJ” Freeman (DPS Capitol Detail – Baton Rouge)
    • DPS Officer William Brewster (Transportation Safety Services – Baton Rouge)
    • Rusty Perry, LA Wildlife and Fisheries
    • Buddy King, Winn Parish Fire Department
    • Chief Deputy Steven Martel, Avoyelles Parish S.O.
    • LSP K-9 “Ricco”
  • Exceptional Bravery Award – Awarded for acts of bravery which result in the saving of a human life, or the attempt to do so, at the risk of one’s personal safety
    • John Eastwold (Civilian)
    • John LaBruzzo (Civilian)
    • Robert Fletcher (Civilian)
  • Fusion Center Award – The Louisiana State Analytical and Fusion Exchange Center (LA-SAFE) was awarded the prestigious NFCA/IBM “Fusion Center of the Year Award” at the 2016 National Fusion Center Association’s annual training event in Alexandria, VA in recognition of the exceptional service LA-SAFE provides to the citizens of Louisiana and the nation.

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