Corporal Logan Benjamin, of the Vandalia Police Department, was awarded the Medal of Valor by Missouri Gov. Mike Parson on Nov. 13 during a day the governor proclaimed as Missouri Public Safety Recognition Day.
The Medal of Valor is Missouri’s “highest award recognizing public safety officers who exhibit exceptional courage, extrordinary decisiveness and presence of mind, and unusual swiftness of action, regardless of his or her personal safety, in the attempt to save or protect human life.
Corporal Benjamin received the honor for his efforts during an incident on June 19, 2017.
On that day, he responded to a residence to check on the welfare of a man who had been texting an ex-girlfriend that he was considering suicide on June 19, 2017.
When he knocked on the front door Corporal Benjamin heard a loud thud and gasping coming from inside. Corporal Benjamin immediately made entry and found a man hanging from a support beam from a belt that was around his neck.
He grabbed the man around the legs and waist and lifted him to prevent certain strangulation. But the man repeatedly hit Corporal Benjamin in the head. Struggling to prop the man up, Corporal Benjamin’s portable radio microphone was knocked off preventing him from calling for assistance. Despite the man continuing to fight violently, he managed to call for assistance and used his tactical knife to cut the belt the man was hanging from. As both men fell to the ground, the suicidal man went for Corporal Benjamin’s knife. Corporal Benjamin drew his service pistol and commanded the man to stop trying to hurt himself and Corporal Benjamin. The suicidal man complied and was transported to a hospital for a mental health evaluation. This man remains alive and well to this day because of Corporal Benjamin’s quick thinking and unwavering determination.
When ask how it felt to receive the Medal of Valor from Missouri Governor Parson Benjamin responded with, “It’s awesome. I mean I really didn’t think I deserve it, but a lot of people did of the City. It is part of the job.”
Corporal Logan was inspired to get into law enforcement by his dad, who was in law enforcement in Louisiana and then Pike County since Logan was a baby.
Corporal Benjamin has pictures of him, badges, the stories he told, and everything else like that. Officer Benjamin said it was just something he wanted to always do since he was a kid.
“Helping people, I love doing it,” he noted. “I don’t do it for recognition. It’s cool.”
Vandalia Police Chief Christopher Hammann told the City Council of Corporal Benjamin’s award during last week’s Board of Alderman meeting.