Officers Honored for Assisting Elderly Woman in Need

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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News item

Officers Honored for Assisting Elderly Woman in Need

Posted: 10/29/2015
Mayor, Andrew Markham, Joseph Bowers, Chief RauschKnoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero and Police Chief David Rausch today named Knoxville Police Department Officers Joseph Bowers and Andrew Markham the June Officers of the Month.  Officer Bowers has been with the department since November 2007 while Officer Markham has been with KPD since July 2011.

Chief Rausch said that on June 14, 2015, at approximately 10:40 p.m., the 911 Center received a call from an elderly female seeking help.  The female said she didn’t need an ambulance or the fire department, but that she was “scared and had no one to help her.”  Officers Bowers and Markham responded to her residence where they located the female in her living room.  The 88-year-old woman was in her recliner, but was unable to get up.  Due to her health the woman must use a reclining lift chair to stand up.  The chair had malfunctioned leaving her without a way to stand up.  The officers continued to talk to the woman who indicated the chair was out of warranty and that since she is on a fixed income, she could not afford to have it repaired.  It was also discovered she was alone with no family or friends to call on for help.  

Chief Rausch said “Obviously, this was very upsetting to both officers.  They immediately helped her out of the chair and launched an investigation into why the chair was malfunctioning.”

They were able to determine all the electrical wiring from the chair controller had ripped away from the motor assembly.  Officer Markham drove to his home to retrieve his tool box and supplies while Officer Bowers stayed and reassured the woman.  Together, the officers were able to repair the wiring, which enabled the chair to function properly again.  

Chief Rausch said, “This is neither a sensational nor courageous act the officers performed, but it is a perfect example of who these officers are.  At a time when the woman was desperately afraid and completely alone, she reached out to her neighborhood officers because she had no one else.  Officer Bowers and Officer Markham are a credit to this department, this city, and the law enforcement profession.”  


Click here to view a listing of previous KPD award winners.