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Columbia County Observer

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Columbia County News

Columbia County's Road Deputies: More than glory and money keep them on the job

Columbia County Sheriff's Deputy Darrell Clay

COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – Being a Sheriff's Deputy in a rural county requires more than just a love of money, as Columbia County's road deputies are some of the poorest paid in Florida. There is more to the job than guns and glory. The Deputies that patrol the highway and byways are your neighbors, highly trained and dedicated professionals. When Deputies Clay and Staley gave emergency medical treatment to keep a young mother from bleeding to death after she had cut her juggler vein in an apparent suicide attempt it wasn't for any glory. It is what they do.

During last night's meeting of The County 5 (County Commission) Deputies Clay and Staley were given awards by the President of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution for their quick thinking and lifesaving actions.

In a letter to Mr. Craig, Sheriff Mark Hunter wrote the following:

Dear Mr. Craig:

The Columbia County Sheriff's Office has chosen to nominate Deputy Darrell Clay and Deputy Scott Staley for a "team effort" in regards to their quick response and actions that saved a life on November 24, 2012.

On November 24,2012, Deputy Darrell Clay responded to a location in reference to a possible attempted suicide of a young adult female. Upon Deputy Clay's arrival, the female was found holding her throat and blood was pooling around her body.

Deputy Clay applied pressure to the injury. Deputy Scott Staley responded and began to administer first aid to the female, to include slowing the blood flow and intubating the patient, which stabilized her to the point where she could be transported by medics. She was then taken in to emergency surgery and her life was saved.

The woman's jugular vein and carotid artery had been severed, both of which are typically fatal wounds. Without the quick response of Deputy Clay and Deputy Staley, the woman would most likely have died.

The woman later made statements that she had no intent to actually end her life. She is the mother of two small children who were also on scene.

Deputy Darrell Clay has served as a Deputy Sheriff with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office since February 2006.

Deputy Scott Staley has served as a Deputy Sheriff with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office since January of 2011. He is also the Medic for our SWAT Team.

On January 10, 2013, Deputy Clay and Deputy Staley were honored by our agency for their actions in providing life saving care and were presented with the Medal of Distinction.

Signed by Sheriff Hunter


You can see the award and the medal here. The last line, omitted, should read, "And being a human being." 

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