National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum Announces September 2020 Officer of the Month

Officer Erika Urrea recognized for life-saving action to rescue wheelchair-bound man from oncoming train.

WASHINGTON – The National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum is pleased to announce Lodi (CA) Police Department Officer Erika Urrea has been named September Officer of the Month.

Officer Erika Urrea

Officer Urrea was working her regular patrol shift on August 12, 2020, when she noticed a man in a wheelchair. The man appeared to be stuck on some nearby train tracks and was struggling to free himself. With the train just moments away, Officer Urrea, a 14-year veteran of the police department, sprang into action.

She rushed over to the man and attempted to free the wheelchair from the tracks. The train was now barreling towards Officer Urrea and the man, its horn blowing and bells clanging. Officer Urrea was unable to move the wheelchair, so she summoned all of her strength, lifted the man out of the wheelchair and pulled him to safety, just before the train passed by.

Officer Urrea heard the train crash into the wheelchair, but both she and the man were safe. The 66-year old man suffered a leg injury and was taken to the hospital for treatment. The entire heart-stopping scene was captured on Officer Urrea’s body camera.

“This was an extraordinary act of bravery and selflessness,” said National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund CEO Marcia Ferranto. “Officer Urrea’s quick actions without regard for her own personal safety saved that man’s life. The video shows that a split-second later, the situation would have had a tragic outcome.  It is for this reason that she is most deserving of our September Officer of the Month Award.”

Located in the nation’s capital, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of America’s law enforcement officers. The Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Award Program began in 1996 and recognizes federal, state, and local officers who distinguish themselves through exemplary law enforcement service and devotion to duty.

For media inquiries, please contact Robyn Small at 202-737-8524

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About the National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum
Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to telling the story of American law enforcement and making it safer for those who serve. The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial contains the names of 22,217 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. For more information about the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, visit LawMemorial.org. Authorized by Congress in 2000, the 57,000-square-foot National Law Enforcement Museum at the Motorola Solutions Foundation Building tells the story of American law enforcement by providing visitors a “walk in the shoes” experience along with educational journeys, immersive exhibitions, and insightful programs. The Museum is an initiative of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, a 501(c)(3) organization. For more information on the Law Enforcement Museum, visit LawEnforcementMuseum.org.

Robyn Small
rsmall@nleomf.org
(202) 737-8524