57th MP Co. first on scene, first to respond during tragic car accident

| July 28, 2011 | 0 Comments

Maj. Shea A. Asis
8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command

MPs direct traffic, assist injured and attempt to control vehicle fire

8th MP Bde.

8th MP Bde.

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — The day started off like any other for Soldiers assigned to the day shift at the Provost Marshal Office on Fort Shafter.

The shift, however, ended in triumph and tragedy.

Soldiers from the 57th Military Police Company, 728th MP Battalion, 8th MP Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, were the first responders to the tragic accident on the H2 freeway, July 18.

Like numerous times before, MPs boarded the government vehicle at Schofield Barracks to go to Fort Shafter. Shortly after passing the Pineapple Road overpass, Soldiers saw three cars strewn about the freeway, with morning traffic hectically trying to avoid the accident scene.

In reactive mode, Staff Sgt. Billy Charles, noncommissioned officer in charge of the morning shift, told his driver to pull over.

“I started to tell Soldiers to render aid to those hurt and for the others in the group to direct the traffic flow. Everything I said, they did like second nature,” Charles said.

Spc. Kirk Harris and Pfcs. Donald Hura, Erin Elder and Stanley Bray, all directed traffic to avoid causing another accident and to get the morning traffic moving out of the area.

“I grabbed my road guard vest and started to direct traffic as best as I could,” Hura said.

Spc. Austin Easter ran to the first vehicle. He could see from a distance that the occupant of the vehicle was not doing well. Once he assessed that the person in the vehicle could no longer be helped, he then ran to the second vehicle, which started to catch fire.

“Myself and Spc. Andrew Mastarone both tried to extinguish the fire and to keep the occupant calm during this time,” Easter said.

Easter and Mastarone could tell that the occupant was injured, and they stayed with her to comfort her as much as possible.

“A week prior to this accident, we had just completed refresher training on first aid, so our training took over,” Easter said. “You go over step by step what you need to do to help the person out.”

During this time, Spc. Torrance Polk ran to the third car to keep the occupant calm.

“She responded well to me and my commands, so I stayed with her ‘til help arrived,” Polk said.

Shortly after the accident occurred and the MPs came across the scene, Honolulu Police Department and emergency medical service units arrived. Charles gave them an update on the situation.

Although the accident had a tragic ending, this incident help reaffirm to all of the Soldiers why they became law enforcement professionals.

“I enjoy helping people. If you can save one person’s life, then you made a change,” Easter said.

MPs who assisted in first response

Pfc. Stanley Bray

Staff Sgt. Billy Charles

Spc. Austin Easter

Pfc. Erin Elder

Spc. Kirk Harris

Pfc. Donald Hura

Spc. Andrew Mastarone

Spc. Torrance Polk


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