Officer Gets Standing Ovation at Council Meeting
Port Washington officials publicly recognized Officer Jerry Nye for his brave efforts in rescuing a 21-year-old resident from his home that was recently destroyed in a fire.
Port Washington Police Officer Jerry Nye received a standing ovation Tuesday night at the city's Common Council meeting.
Council members were recognizing the officer for his brave acts that saved the life of a Port resident in a recent house fire.
"I asked these fine gentleman to come before us tonight so that we could have an opportunity as council to acknowledge the … bravery of Officer Nye," Mayor Tom Mlada said.
Port Washington Police Chief Kevin Hingiss and Port Washington Fire Chief Mark Mitchell spoke about Nye's efforts and career at the meeting.
"Everything I can say about Officer Nye is positive, he’s a tremendous officer … (he) does everything we need of him, does more," Hingiss said.
Nye started as a police reserve officer in 1999, Hingiss said. He then became a police dispatcher and, in 2002, a sworn officer; he is also in charge of the honor guard and last year, was one of two officers to win the Sir Robert Peel Award.
"We have very few house fires in Port Washington," Mitchell said. "As a matter of fact, the last one was almost a year to the day (of the latest incident). So when we do … we’re always concerned about life safety — and when they come in at 1:30 in the morning its (even more concerning)."
But, Mitchell said in a letter to the police department and city officials that he read to the crowd, "if it were not for the heroic act by Officers Nye and (Reserve Officer Michael) Kolbach, the subject they rescued would have most surely suffered severe, if not, fatal injuries, because of the fire.
"A search of the first floor found no victims. An initial negative search
and increasing smoke conditions would have forced most out of the building.
Not so with Officers Nye and Kolbach," Mitchell said.
The fire took place at 1:30 a.m. July 8 at 230 E. Douglas St. Justin Kriegel, a 21-year-old, was the only resident home at the time; he was rescued along with the family dog, but a family cat was killed in the blaze.
The Benson Family Benefit Fund was since set up at the Port Washington State Bank, and people interested in donating to the family can stop by any branch and let the banker know they’d like to make a deposit to that account.