A Rockville Centre police officer who was recognized as 2013’s ‘Cop of the Year’ has been recognized by the Town of Hempstead for his fast-acting rescue of two children trapped in a house fire and for saving the life of a woman in cardiac arrest.
Officer Paul Kaplon was among 22 police officers to be presented with the Town of Hempstead’s 2013 Police Service Award “for his willingness to serve the Rockville Centre community at any cost,” according to a town release.
Last July, while on regular patrol, Kaplon received a call for an unknown emergency at a local home, according to a town release. When he arrived at the scene, Kaplon saw heavy smoke coming from a raging house fire.
The officer, unable to enter the home because of the heavy smoke and flames, quickly went to the back of the house. A 13-year old girl was able to jump into his arms from a second floor window. After bringing her to safety, Kaplon climbed a ladder to a second floor window and rescued a 9-year-old boy.
This past November, Kaplon again demonstrated his lifesaving skills when he reported to a home where a woman was in cardiac arrest. When he arrived at the scene, Kaplon determined that the victim was not breathing and had no signs of life. He immediately began CPR, resulting in the victim regaining a pulse. She was transported to South Nassau Communities Hospital, where she was able to receive further medical assistance.
“While we live, work and raise our families here in the Town of Hempstead, our dedicated police officers are patrolling the streets to ensure that our quality of life is protected,” Supervisor Kate Murray said. “I am proud to present these 22 police officers with the town’s Police Service Award in recognition of their heroic and selfless acts.”