Letter to the editor: Middlebury community rallied behind injured officer

Thank You, Middlebury.
On May 7, Middlebury Police Officer Kevin Emilio was injured in the crash of his police cruiser while responding to an emergency call. The police car was destroyed and a second police car was significantly damaged, but that officer was unhurt. Officer Emilio is recovering from his injuries, which will require several orthopedic surgeries; he will be out of work for an extended period of time. (Click here to read more about the crash.)
It is the measure of the quality of a community on how that community responds to a crisis. Middlebury responded beyond measure. The outpouring of support and expressions of concern for Officer Emilio were certainly humbling. It makes all of us at the police department proud to serve Middlebury. Our professional colleagues — the Middlebury Fire Department, Middlebury Regional Emergency Medical Service, the Vermont State Police — all came to our aid and provided their usual level of competent professional service that we’ve come to expect. They in turn were provided assistance from Bristol Rescue and the Bristol Fire Department. My sincere thanks to them all. To the emergency room staff at Porter Hospital, Barb Wagner, et al., the care you provided was exceptional, as always.
And we appreciate the many folks in this community who provided support to the family and who expressed concern and offered hopes for the recovery of Officer Emilio and for the safety of our officers. My gratitude to our selectboard and our voters, who approve the purchase of vehicles that are rugged and built to withstand the type of dynamic crash that we experienced, which helped protect our officers from further serious injury.
Behind the scenes, the administrative team at the town offices worked tirelessly to have insurance claims processed and to ensure Officer Emilio would have medical bills covered through workers compensation and disability insurance to cover his salary.
Finally a special thanks to the Colchester Police Department, who provided us a car for temporary use until we can recover our inventory. Chief Jen Morrison and Town Manager Aaron Frank were instrumental in getting this going.
Middlebury is certainly an exceptional community. But then again we always knew that. Thank you all, it is our pleasure to serve you.
Tom Hanley, Chief of Police

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