Piland receives VFW Life Saving Award

Published 1:46 pm Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Dare County Sheriff’s Captain Trey Piland received the Veterans of Foreign Wars National Life Saving Award for rescuing a small child at Roanoke Island’s Old Swimming Hole. Kelli Harmon made the presentation at the Dare County Board of Commissioners Nov. 18 meeting with other VFW Post 10950 members in attendance.

June 1, 2018 at 7:01 p.m., the emergency call came to Dare Central Communications about a child who had gone under water and could not be seen. The mother was screaming. The location was the Old Swimming Hole close to the airport.

Capt. Trey Piland is in charge of Dare Central Communications for the county’s sheriff. The center is across the road from the swimming hole.

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Dispatchers on the shift said Piland heard the call, came into the dispatch room and asked where and what the call was. “Without hesitation, he sprang into action and responded.”

When he arrived at the swimming hole, Piland found adults who could not swim. The girl appeared unresponsive. Piland jumped into the water and pulled the little girl back on shore. With the help of other emergency workers, she started breathing again.

Dare County Sheriff Doug Doughtie responded to the email from the dispatchers on shift: “You said in your email that Trey was there for reasons not known at that particular time and as I told him, God had him there for just that, knowing that he was a willing servant and would do what was needed. Trey did just what we expected him to do and answered the call.”



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