September 12, 2017 - The Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department recognized one of their own during their meeting held September 11, 2017 for a heroic act.
Brock Pugh was presented with a plaque during the meeting for recently saving a life. The man whose life he saved wears and has worn many hats; however, the one that most likely was closest to home for Pugh was that of his father as the life he saved was that of Perry Pugh.
Perry Pugh, who also is the Joaquin Volunteer Fire Chief, had been eating dinner one evening recently when he suddenly could not speak nor breathe as he was choking.
His wife Donna was quick to try and help him, but it just wasn't working. Perry Pugh said he thought that was it, he thought he might have been at his end.
That's when Brock stepped in and put to use CPR training he received while attending Joaquin ISD as a senior.
"The other night we almost lost our chief. He was at home eating and I guess he doesn't realize, the older you get the smaller your bites need to be," Jessie Griffin, Joaquin Fireman, said in jest.
Griffith said on Brock's third attempt, the piece of meat Perry Pugh had been choking on came free and he was able to breathe once again.
According to Griffith, a couple of years after he joined the fire department he joined EMS, which he has been in ever since that time.
"The man that got me doing EMS, he told me that some people choose to do this job and others are chosen to do this job. Brock, from what I hear with you working under pressure the way you did, being your dad, working on your family it's hard to do," said Griffith.
He then presented Brock Pugh with a plaque for saving lives above and beyond the call of duty. Griffith then encouraged Brock to attend EMT courses and informed him Panola College would be starting in January if he is interested.
Joaquin fireman Steve Cockrell commented on the benefit of the requirement for seniors at Joaquin ISD to learn CPR.
"I understand it's required for senior to learn CPR and it's Mike Lawson teaching this and Brock was paying attention in class, so we're thankful that he was paying attention and everything came out as well as it did," said Cockrell.
Lawson is a teacher and coach at Joaquin ISD as well as a former Shreveport fireman who is teaching CPR and first aid at the school. Joaquin ISD is also offering an elective firefighting class to seniors.