Committee of One Hundred honors state trooper

When Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper Justin Gandy arrived on the scene of a life-threatening injury accident, he didn't know he would leave a hero.

The temperature was below zero with a wind chill of minus 22 degrees and snowy, sleet-covered roads. Gandy was dispatched to a location four miles east of Optima on U.S. Highway 54 in Oklahoma's Panhandle. Adrian Batterman, 48, of Guymon had lost control of his vehicle due to ice on the road, then overcorrected and went into a broad slide.

"Mr. Batterman was not wearing his safety belt and was ejected out of the driver's side window as his vehicle rolled over," said Trooper Pete Norwood, spokesperson.

Gandy found Batterman in a pool of blood, 12 feet from the vehicle. He was bleeding from a head wound and gasping for air. Gandy grabbed his first-aid kit and began administering immediate medical assistance on the victim. He placed a compress on the victim's head to stop the bleeding and cleared his airway to allow Batterman to breathe.

"The victim's tongue was swollen which had trapped a large amount of blood," said Norwood. "Gandy utilized a suction bulb to keep the airway clear and free of any additional accumulation of blood."

After placing a bandage compress on the victim's head to stop the bleeding, Gandy retrieved blankets from his patrol car to keep Batterman from going into shock.

"Just before the ambulance arrived to take over, the victim stopped breathing and Gandy administered CPR in an attempt to revive him," said Norwood.

Paramedics rushed Batterman to the hospital where he suffered significant head, neck and internal injuries, two broken clavicles, a concussion and bruised lung. He remained in intensive care for two weeks.

"The medical personnel credited Gandy for saving the victim's life," said Norwood. "Batterman's a lucky man to have had Gandy's medical training and quick response available to him, but he would not have suffered such serious injury if he was wearing a safety belt."

Gandy received the Hulsey Award for bravery and extraordinary heroism from the Committee of One Hundred in a ceremony in Oklahoma City on March 7.