A total of 16 public safety responders and two civilians received either the prestigious Missouri Medal of Valor or new department public safety awards at an event held on October 28.
Locally, two Audrain County deputies and one Missouri State Highway Patrol trooper received the Medal of Merit as presented by Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens.
The three men were recognized for their heroics during an incident at the Heritage Apartments in Farber in October 2016.
Those honored included Audrain County Deputy Sheriff Derek Chism, Deputy Sheriff, Brian Hollensteiner, and Trooper Austin Kings.
Audrain County Sheriff Matt Oller nominated the men for the honor.
“Congrats Corporal Derek Chism, Sergean Brian Hollensteiner, and Trooper Austin Kings,” said Sheriff Oller on Facebook after pictures were posted from the ceremony. “You make me proud.”
During the incident, the men were dispatched to Farber after a report of an armed man holding a woman against her will at an address not known at the time.
After they investigated and were able to determine the residence, they came in contact with the armed man who had an illegally modified shotgun. It was later learned that the man was on parole for murder.
After the suspect refused to obey commands and he approached the officers, he was shot multiple times.
After shooting the man, the three men rendered medical aid on the same man they feared could have shot them.
No one else was injured during the altercation.
“First, the willingness of members of two different agencies to work so well together,” Sheriff Oller said in a public statement on Facebook.
“That really isn’t all that uncommon for Audrain County Sheriff’s Deputies and the State Troopers assigned here. The color of the uniform and the patch on the sleeve really don’t matter here. Second, and more interesting, was the fact that these men felt fearful they would be shot, and yet rendered life saving aid to their would be assailant. This action is truly in the best spirit of what we do.”