Captain Bruce Relph, Sgt. Chad McCluskey and Officer Derek Highbarger were all honored with the city’s “Life Saving Award.”

Sometimes the term “hero” is used too frequently.

When a man has a massive heart attack after midnight, he needs a hero. Luckily for Jim Firebaugh of Augusta, three answered the call.

At this week’s Augusta City Council meeting, Captain Bruce Relph, Sgt. Chad McCluskey and Officer Derek Highbarger were all honored with the city’s “Life Saving Award.”

When Firebaugh collapsed at about 12:30 a.m. on Oct. 30, the three officers responded to the call and used CPR techniques and an Automated External Defibrillator to keep him alive until paramedics could arrive.

“Chief Brewer, I want to thank you for the outstanding department that you are fortunate enough to be the head of. You have a great group of men and women who serve the fine people of Augusta and I am very thankful for each and every one of them,” read a letter from the victim’s son. “Thank you to you all for all you do.”

Safety Department Chief Tyler Brewer said according to department policy, “The Life Saving Award shall be awarded to any member of the Augusta Department of Safety or any other volunteer safety officer who is directly responsible for the saving of a human life.”

He said the award’s committee was unanimous in its decision to present the award to the three officers.

Kent Bush can be reached at kbush@butlercountytimesgazette.com.