National Night Out Event in Wheeling Helps Build Stronger Community
WHEELING — A local man had the chance Tuesday to meet and thank a Wheeling police officer who helped save his life just a little over a month ago.
That encounter came during the local National Night Out event held at Wheeling Park. The event, held on the first Tuesday of August, allows police and the community to come together under positive circumstances. Dozens of residents attended the event designed to enhance relationships between residents and law enforcement in hopes to make the city’s neighborhoods safer, better places to live.
Diana and Garland Flowers had the opportunity to meet and thank Wheeling Police Patrolman Brandon Hoehn, who was one of two WPD officers who helped administer CPR to Garland Flowers in mid-June. Those officers came to the rescue shortly after a 911 call after he suffered from cardiac arrest.
Flowers said he wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for the heroic efforts of Hoehn, patrolman Scott Page and Wheeling firefighters who all assisted with CPR efforts.
“If he hadn’t showed up when he did … I wouldn’t have made it,” said Garland Flowers, shortly after having the opportunity to meet Hoehn.
Flowers said they randomly showed up at the National Night Out event in hopes of meeting and thanking the officers who were involved in saving his life.
Diana Flowers said she was taking her husband to a local hospital on June 11 when he became unresponsive. She said she pulled off in a South Wheeling business parking lot and called 911 while providing CPR to her husband.
It was a brief time later that Hoehn and Page showed up on the scene and took over with CPR efforts on Garland. She said the doctor told them all the individuals who assisted with the CPR efforts on Garland saved his life.
Wheeling Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger said hearing from the Flowers was a pleasant surprise and a great way to kick off National Night Out.
“We’re honored to be here. … It’s very important for us to meet under these circumstances,” Schwertfeger explained. “This is more about (getting) to know each other, and those relationships are most likely going to last a lifetime.”
The Wheeling Police Department, along with more than a dozen community partners, including multiple social service agencies once again took part in National Night Out activities and demonstrations at the Wheeling Park Ice Rink. In addition to the Wheeling Police Department, the local ATF, U.S Attorney’s office and Ohio County Prosecutor’s office were also represented
The WPD showcased its many units and divisions, including Explorer Post No. 1, the Neighborhood Assistance Volunteers/Citizens Police Academy and new victim advocacy program. Additionally, the Wheeling Police Department’s K9 Unit offered demonstrations.
Glen Dale resident Vania Young said National Night Out is a terrific event where local residents have the opportunity to meet local law enforcement officers. She said her children were truly excited about attending.
“I just think it’s great the community and the police can come and work together,” Young said.