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Berlin, MD 21811
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Editorial

Gratitude to Berlin officers who pulled two from blaze

8/14/14

Town Council meetings can be an interesting place spanning the more mundane to sometimes-heated arguments to presentations to retiring civil workers.

It’s not often that a Town Council meeting turns into recognition of true heroes.

But that’s what happened at Monday’s Berlin Town Council meeting.

There, Berlin Police officers Spo. Edward Carmean and Spo. Merle Bragg were recognized by the town but also by the two people whose lives they saved during an April 17 house fire.

Tocarra Derrickson, 31, and her 6-year-old daughter Mia McKenzie are alive today because of the actions of these two officers. Berlin Police Chief Arnold Downing made the presentation.

“This is one of those proud occasions when a chief of police gets to stand before a community to state the good deeds and works of their officers,” said Downing. “We all can use the word ‘hero’ in loose terms and loose ways, but today I can go ahead and say the Berlin Police Department has two heroes.”

Both occupants of the house on 117 Branch Street were perhaps minutes from a tragic ending, had it not been for the actions of the two officers. They saw a small hand when looking through a window, broke through the window and rescued little Mia. But it was Mia who directed the officers to her mother, who was still inside the burning home.

With Fire Department first responders now on the scene, Derrickson was rescued.

Some times we get caught up at council meetings on the minutiae of ordinances, code and zoning. We’re not writing here that those variables aren’t important, because they are.

The two officers received the Life Saving Award medal.

Berlin is proud of them, their chief is proud of them, the two people they saved are grateful to them.

We want to add, this part of town life that appropriately was praised and celebrated.

Great job.

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