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TIP honors OCSD personnel at Heroes with a Heart gala

Three Orange County Sheriff’s Department personnel were among 19 honorees at the March 28 Trauma Intervention Program annual Heroes with Heart gala, which recognizes first responders who go above and beyond to show empathy and compassion on the job.    

TIP is an invaluable resource that first responders often call upon to be the comfort and support of those in our community who are realizing their worst day. Whether it’s responding to a fatal collision, the home of a family who has lost a loved one, the scene of a violent crime, or a hospital bed to comfort a grieving wife, TIP volunteers commit to being an emotional support to victims during traumatic events.

We are honored that TIP recognized our personnel for their compassionate approach to very difficult calls. The TIP volunteers shared, in their words, why they nominated each first responder:  

Deputy Coroner Nguyen

“On October 31, 2017, I was called to Irvine to support the family after a sudden death. Deputy Coroner Nguyen was extremely helpful to the Vietnamese family, speaking to them in their native language. In addition, I was very impressed with the care and warmth with which he interacted with the family. He was responsive to all of their needs.”

- Dick Oakley

 Deputy Saldivar


 “On June 25, 2017, I was called to Dana Point to support the family of a son who died. Deputy Saldivar demonstrated extraordinary compassion to the witnesses of the accident who tried to revive the child and did CPR. He went out of his way to check on the distraught witness, and reassured him he did everything possible to save the child. I don’t think Deputy Saldivar had any idea what an impact his words had. At the end of the call, he tearfully hugged the witness and suggested he hold his children close.”

- Maryellen Lowrey

 Deputy Vega

“On March 8, 2018, I was called to Stanton to support the parents of a child who had died. There I worked with Deputy Carlos Vega. He was an amazing deputy. At one point, the mother of the child collapsed into Deputy Vega’s arms and cried. He held her, comforting her and not saying anything, just holding her. My job as a TIP volunteer would be much more difficult without my partnership with Deputy Vega.”

- Manny Jurado