Thames Valley Police officer humbled by Inspiration in Policing Award
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A Thames Valley Police officer was presented with the Inspiration in Policing Award at the Police Federation of England and Wales’ Police Bravery awards yesterday (13/7).
Sergeant Loz East, based at Cowley police station, was honoured for taking on a huge array of physical feats to raise tens of thousands of pounds for charity after being diagnosed with incurable pancreatic cancer.
On receiving his award, Sgt East said: “It is humbling. It is lovely for the officers who are all here to be recognised for the actions they’ve taken and how brave they are. It is a lovely setting. For me personally, it is unexpected.”
The annual Police Bravery Awards celebrate the bravest of police officers across England and Wales for displaying outstanding commitment to their role while on or off duty.
The Inspiration in Policing Award category recognises extraordinary officers whose achievements do not necessarily fit with a specific act of bravery in the last 12 months.
Instead, they are an officer who has battled adversity and demonstrated immense moral courage, spirit and strength to highlight an issue and/or make a positive change for the benefit of policing and their colleagues.
Chief Constable Jason Hogg, who contributed to the awards event, said: “I was delighted to celebrate with all the 2023 Award winners in London and to see Loz collect his well-earned Inspiration in Policing Award.
“By pushing himself in support of others, he has shown tremendous courage and rightly inspires pride in all of us who work alongside him in TVP.
“My congratulations to Loz and all those who have supported him in his endeavours, and my thanks to Thames Valley Police Federation Chair Craig O’Leary and the National Police Federation who organise these awards every year to showcase the best of policing.”
In addition, Sergeant Thomas Thornton was nominated for the national Police Bravery Award for skilfully talking down a gunman experiencing a mental health crisis, but did not win on the night.
Sgt Thornton said: “It all happened so quickly. I was in shock, because I thought the incident I was attending was very minor, and then within 30 seconds I was being held at gunpoint.
“I’m quite a calm person, and certainly in this scenario it worked out that no one was hurt, everyone was safe."
Chief Constable Hogg said: "Tom’s response to this incident is a shining example of the courage and leadership that we are proud of at TVP.
“There was no way of him knowing if he was being faced with a viable firearm or not, however his selfless actions, quick thinking and determination ensured that all involved were kept safe."