2017-02-15 / Community View

Almont Police officers recognized for saving teen after ATV accident

BY PHIL FOLEY
810-452-2616 •


Almont Police Dept. Officers Michael Ryan and Ryan Wilson flank Justin Gabryel, the Allenton teen they’re credited with saving last July, during ceremonies recognizing their efforts at a Feb. 7 meeting of the Almont Village Council. 
Photo courtesy Ian Kempf Almont Police Dept. Officers Michael Ryan and Ryan Wilson flank Justin Gabryel, the Allenton teen they’re credited with saving last July, during ceremonies recognizing their efforts at a Feb. 7 meeting of the Almont Village Council. Photo courtesy Ian Kempf ALMONT — An Allenton boy, 16, who broke nearly every bone in his face last summer after he slammed into a mailbox along Hough Road while riding a quad runner, is alive, in part, because of two Almont Police Dept. officers. A second teen, from Almont, was riding on the ATV as a passenger.

The officers, Ryan Wilson and Michael Ryan, were recognized for their life-saving efforts during a Feb. 7 meeting of the Almont Village Council.

Wilson and Ryan, Interim Police Chief Andy Martin said, were the first two emergency workers on the scene following the July 7 crash. The officers found the teen lying in the ditch and as they began to administer first aid the teen was choking on his tongue.

Martin said as Ryan held the youth’s head, Wilson cleared the teen’s airway and he began to breath again. The two police officers continued performing first aid until Almont First Responders and a Medstar Ambulance crew arrived.

According to reports, the teens were headed east on Hough Road on the ATV. Martin said the Allenton teen, who was driving and not wearing a helmet, was looking over his shoulder to see if anyone was behind him and when he looked back, he hit a reinforced mailbox.

Martin said it was unclear how fast the machine was traveling, but that model of Suzuki is limited to a top speed of 40 mph.

Almont First Responder Robert Parsell later told Martin that if the two officers had not removed the teen’s tongue from his throat, he likely would have choked to death on the side of the road before EMS crews arrived.

Shortly after the crash Martin said the boy’s mother told him that her son suffered several broken ribs and had some steel fragments imbedded in the frontal lobes of his brain. He was initially taken to McLaren Lapeer Region, but later transferred to The University of Michigan Medical Center where he underwent several surgeries. Martin said the Almont teen was treated and released with minor injuries at the scene.

The Allenton youth and his family were on hand for the award presentation.

In nominating Wilson and Ryan for a life-saving award, Parsell told Martin the pair “performed their duties above and beyond, and with the utmost professionalism.”

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