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June 4, 2008 > Union City Police Officers receive "Bear Hug" Award

Union City Police Officers receive "Bear Hug" Award

By Maureen Garrett
Photos By Sgt. John Elissiry (UCPD)

At the May 27, 2008 Union City Council meeting, Mayor Mark Green, presented awards to deserving Union City Police Department employees.

Union City Police Officers, James Martin and Eric Wittmer, three year veterans with the police department, received the "Bear Hug" award from the Alameda County Emergency Medical Services for saving the life of an infant who was choking at the Union Landing complex.

On March 7, 2008, Officers Martin and Wittmer, who are currently assigned to the Union Landing detail, were en route to a disturbance call, on foot, when they observed a frantic mother and distraught father holding their infant son's lifeless body. After a brief assessment of the child's condition, the officers determined the child was not breathing due to an airway obstruction. Officers Martin and Wittmer took immediate life-saving measures to remove the obstruction and help restore the infant's breathing. The infant made a full recovery and recently celebrated his first birthday thanks to the efforts and quick action of these two officers.

Also receiving awards were dispatcher, Kelly Sipos, who has provided outstanding service as a dispatcher/records clerk since January 1991. She was awarded recognition as Dispatcher/Records Clerk of the year 2007. Police Officer Bruce Vance who began his career with the Union City Police Department in September 1986 has held positions of School Resource Officer, Drug Awareness and Resistance Education Instructor and Crime Scene Technician. He has provided quality instruction and supervision to at-risk youths participating in the Law Enforcement Youth Academy, a collaborative project involving the police Departments and School Districts of Union City, Fremont, Newark and Hayward. Officer Vance was recognized by the Union City Police Officer's Association as the 2007 "Officer of the Year."

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