WPD officer receives commendation

Quick action during Jan. 9 incident saved life of stricken motorist

Bill Spinks
Waxahachie Daily Light
Waxahachie Police Officer Austin Rollins shows off his patrol unit to a lucky second-grade student at Marvin Elementary in March 2019. Rollins was commended by Fire Chief Ricky Boyd during last week’s Waxahachie City Council meeting for his life-saving actions during a major motor vehicle incident on Jan. 9.

A Waxahachie Police Department officer was commended for his life-saving actions during a major vehicular incident earlier this month.

Officer Austin Rollins received a standing ovation at the Jan. 19 Waxahachie City Council meeting after Fire Chief Ricky Boyd presented the letter of commendation to Rollins.

“While we expect our policemen and firemen to help out those in need, we felt like his actions that day were especially significant,” Boyd said. “He didn’t have fire gear on, a hose line or anything like that to protect him. He thought only of the victim, first and foremost.”

On the afternoon of Jan. 9, police and fire units responded to a major accident on North U.S. Highway 77 in Waxahachie.

A customer in the drive-thru at Raising Cane’s began to have a seizure and pressed down on the accelerator, causing his vehicle to strike several cars in the parking area, crash through bushes, cross the drainage ditch and six lanes of busy traffic on Highway 77, and take out a gas meter before coming to a stop on the opposite side of the highway.

As natural gas flowed freely around the vehicle with the driver unconscious inside, Rollins was the first unit on scene and quickly noticed the danger he was in. Even so, Rollins entered the vehicle and pulled the driver out without assistance. He continued to drag the unconscious driver across the parking lot to a safe area where a nurse came to assist him.

“At a critical moment, Officer Rollins showed courage and respect for another’s life above his own,” Chief Boyd’s letter stated. “He was very aware of the danger he was placing himself in but more so of the pledge he took as an Officer of the City of Waxahachie.”

Members of the City Council were full of praise for Rollins as well as all of the men and women who serve as first responders in the city.

“It’s amazing what first responders do for us every day and we don’t even know about it,“ Mayor David Hill said.

 “What that young man has done is above and beyond the call of duty,” councilmember Doug Barnes added. “To be able to move into that situation that quickly is remarkable. To Mr. Rollins, congratulations and thank you for being brave.”