Pictured: all the law enforcement officers who participated in the response on January 19, 2020. From left to right Officer Steve Garvis, Officer David Drummond, Officer Andrew Miller, Officer Tony Peninno, Officer Trevor Wessells, Captain Brandon Sterling and Officer Zachary Widgeon.
A Virginia Conservation Police Officer and a Virginia Marine Police Officer were awarded the Virginia Department of Natural Resources Meritorious Service Award Medal at a Ceremony Friday morning for their actions which saved the lives of three duck hunters on January 19, 2020 at the mouth of Nandua Bay.
Here is describing the events:
The Virginia Conservation Police had canceled their afternoon waterfowl patrol because weather conditions had deteriorated so rapidly.
When the call came in, the Accomack County Sheriff’s Department launched from East Point in their 26 foot safe boat but were unable to make it past Parker’s Island near the mouth of Onancock Creek because of 40 mph winds and six foot waves.
VMRC Officer Trevor Wessells was at home at the time and responded in a 17 foot Carolina Skiff. He located the individuals, who had been in the water for nearly an hour, when he saw decoys floating.
Once Wessells located the individuals, he radioed Virginia Conservation Officer Steve Garvis and Tony Pennino, who were also searching the area, to the location. The three officers were able to get the hunters in their boats and then to safety.
Garvis received his award a month ago. Friday’s ceremony for Wessells and Pennino was delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Meritorious Service Award Medal is the second highest award Virginia Law Enforcement Officers can receive.