Quincy News

Exchange Club honors public safety personnel

Quincy Police Chief Rob Copley, left, shakes hands with Greg Dreyer, recipient of the Firefighter of the Year award, on Friday at the Quincy Elks Club. The Quincy Exchange Club awarded three first responders and a citizen for going above and beyond what was expected of them. H-W Photo/Katelyn Metzger
Katelyn Metzger 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Mar. 1, 2019 12:01 am Updated: Mar. 1, 2019 11:30 pm

QUINCY -- Quincy Police Officer Chris Mueller attended Friday's Quincy Exchange Club meeting believing his father would be honored.

His father, Lee Mueller, worked for the Quincy Police Department for many years as an evidence technician.

However, it was Chris Mueller who was honored, and he was taken completely by surprise as he received the club's Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award.

"(Quincy Police office manager Jennifer Kerker) and my wife (Jennifer Mueller) conspired against me -- the best I've ever seen anybody get me before," Chris Mueller said. "They had me believing 100 percent that my dad was getting an award, and I was just there to support him."

He said he is humbled by the award, but said he is not a police officer to receive accolades. He does the job because he loves it and working in the community.

Chris Mueller was recognized for his role in a lifesaving attempt to save a man who had driven his car into Quincy Bay.

He was dispatched to Kesler Park on June 16 on a report of a car in the water. Upon arrival, the man was still in car. He put on a life jacket, went into the water and dove underwater three times to try to extract the man from the vehicle. However, he was unsuccessful because of the man's position in the car.

"Any officer that knew they had the ability to do that, they would have done that," Chris Mueller said.

He also was recognized for responding to an incident last week at the Quincy Mall with another Quincy police officer and auxiliary officer, where they reacted to a medical emergency, performed CPR and used an automated external defibrillator to save a woman's life.

The Exchange Club also awarded its Firefighter of the Year Award to Deputy Chief of Operations Greg Dreyer of the Quincy Fire Department.

Fire Chief Joe Henning said Dreyer had held virtually every rank within the department and was committed to helping others.

"He is the first to step up when there is a service opportunity, whether it is ringing bells for the Salvation Army or preparing the food for the Quincy Fire Department's annual golf benefit for Camp Callahan," Henning said. "When there is a member of the department in need of his expertise, he is always willing to go out of his way to assist them, on his own time, to ensure that their needs are met."

New this year is the EMS Professional of the Year award, which was awarded to Connie Meyer, secretary of the Quincy Area EMS Department.

John Simon, director of the Adams County Ambulance Service, said Meyer's devotion to EMS goes well beyond paperwork. She assists with the training of EMTs and paramedics, serving as a simulated patient.

"In every class the real challenge to learn effectively is to have good simulations, scenarios and the ability to bring real life into the classroom," Simon said. "Connie does this willingly being dressed up, made up with makeup, and who knows how many times she has been pregnant in the same year or has died in the same day."

The Exchange Club awarded its Citizen of the Year award to Scott Henze, an original member of the Quincy Fire Department Rehab Team, which supports firefighters during structure fires.

"Through his employer, he has been able to help secure funds for needed equipment on the rehab team, which might not have been possible due to budget constraints," said Mayor Kyle Moore, who introduced Henze.

He also volunteers for the Quincy Citizens Fire Academy, is a member of the Quincy Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association and is president of Quincy Regional Crime Stoppers.

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