MILFORD — About 50 first responders from Hopedale, Milford, and Hopkinton were honored for their heroism for saving the life of a 60-year-old Hopedale man who was trapped under his car last July.
Worcester County District Attorney Joseph Early, Jr., presented the police officers, firefighters and dispatchers from Milford, Hopkinton, and Hopedale involved in the successful search and rescue effort with The TEAM Award yesterday.
The Team Award was created by Early in 2019 to recognize public safety employees who go above and beyond the call of duty.
“When this call came in, there was one goal, and it was a goal shared across everyone involved; to find this man and get him back home to his family,” Early said. “It is only fitting this group of dedicated first-responders receive the TEAM Award because every aspect of this rescue and response embodied teamwork.”
According to the Worcester District Attorney’s office, just after 8:20 a.m. on July 17, 2022, Milford police received a call from neighboring Hopedale police requesting assistance in finding a man who had not returned home and was last seen at around 2 p.m. the previous day.
Milford Police Sergeant Joseph Rizoli and his entire shift joined the Hopedale police in their investigation after the call came in. Hopkinton first responders followed suit.
Police pinged the man’s cellphone and placed him somewhere in the area of the quarries around Walden Woods and Interstate 495 in Milford.
Officers on ATVs searched the woods as drones from the Milford Police Department surveyed the area in an effort to located the man’s Jeep.
At around 3:40 p.m. that day, searchers located the man after authorities contacted a satellite radio service to obtain the exact coordinates of the man’s Jeep.
The man was trapped in his vehicle, which was overturned. Luckily, he was conscious and alert, although he sustained injuries. First responders freed the man and transported him to the hospital.