Thursday, July 18, 2002 | 9:28 a.m.
Six North Las Vegas Police officers were honored for their efforts, both on and off duty, during a commendation ceremony Wednesday.
Officers Kevin Hugins, Rob Aker and Wayne Blackard were given the meritorious service award for saving an 86-year-old woman from a house set on fire by her grandson in 1998.
The officers ran into the burning building, found the woman and brought her out of the fire. Her grandson was later found hiding in a closet in the home and was arrested.
Officer Ian Schwanitz was given the meritorious service award for pulling the driver of a van out of the burning vehicle in September 2001 after an accident, shortly before the van was engulfed in flames.
Officer Terry Wilkerson was presented with the exemplary service award for his efforts to save a 3-week-old girl in January. Wilkerson was called to a home and found the infant not breathing. The officers continued CPR even as the child started vomiting blood. Despite his efforts, the baby girl later died at a hospital.
Officer Rob Reed was given the community service award for his "extraordinary dedication" to his duties and volunteering his time. Reed was recognized for spending his own time to raise money for the Shop with a Cop program for needy children last year. He also coordinated the efforts for an event remembering a slain North Las Vegas office.
Chief Mark Paresi told the officers, family and city officials gathered that all of the officers represent the extraordinary work that is done every day by all officers.
"These folks are not the exception, they are the norm," he said. "They do this every day."