Posted Date: 08/08/2023
The American Legion Allen-McKinney Post 44 Commander, Lonnie Anderson, hosted the Jack Williams First Responder Awards to honor Police Sargent Jacob Mills and Firefighter Captain David Thompson.
Anderson told the crowd on Monday, Aug. 7, in the City Council Chambers that this was the sixth year they had honored local first responders. “The American Legion is all about promoting law and order, and the Jack Williams Award was created after Harrison’s own Medal of Honor Recipient, Jack Williams, who gave his life in WWII so that others could live.”
Anderson thanked their sponsors, Tempo Fire and Security and Campbell Bonding Company, for their generous support so a meal could be provided for the honored departments. “First Community Bank provided the grill and labor, and we were pleased to be able to bring a meal to where you guys work so you could share with your peers.”
Both Mills and Thompson received a very generous swag bag of gifts and letters of congratulations from national, state, and local officials.
Sargent Mills is a resource officer at Harrison Middle School. On April 27, 2023, a student got off the bus and into the car of a family member who did not have custody. They proceeded to drive to Arizona. The mom knew she had put the daughter on the bus, but the school district had marked her absent for the day. The mom notified the school when she did not return on the bus. Mills said the school district’s staff was instrumental in reviewing the video to discover the details.
He gave credit to the team from the Prosecutor’s Office, dispatchers here and in Arizona as well as Corporal Guffy and Officer Gonzales, who worked the case after hours while they waited for the minor and adult to arrive in Arizona. Mills said he appreciated the way the team worked together to ensure the safety of the minor while apprehending the adult.
“This award doesn’t go to just me,” Mills insisted. “It was a whole team of professionals between here and Arizona who worked together to return this minor to the mother safely.”
Captain David Thompson has worked for the Harrison Fire Department for 12 years. Anderson said, “He is highly skilled in rescues that include high-angle, swift water, and confined spaces.
As a firefighter, he has responded to hundreds of calls, including structure fires, car accidents, and hazardous materials incidents.
“Captain Thompson is a very dedicated and passionate firefighter,” Anderson continued. “He always goes the extra mile to help others. He is a valued member of the Harrison Fire Department and is known for his leadership, training, and mentorship skills. He always strives to make the Harrison Fire Department stand out as one of the best departments in the country. In addition to his firefighter duties, he is a certified EMT and proudly responds to the citizens of Harrison in need of medical attention. David is a valuable asset and is dedicated to serving the citizens of Harrison. He is a hero and has saved countless lives.”