Washington, DC—The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has named School Resource Officer Deputy First Class Blaine Gaskill, of the St. Mary’s County (MD) Sheriff’s Office, as the recipient of its Officer of the Month Award for May 2018.
Gunshots rang out shortly before the start of class at Great Mills High School in Lexington, Maryland, on March 20, 2018. A student entered the school armed with a gun and opened fire on a female student with whom he was acquainted in a hallway. A round that struck her also hit another student in the leg.
School Resource Officer Deputy First Class Blaine Gaskill was working at the school that morning and immediately responded to the report of a person with a gun. Deputy First Class Gaskill, who is a former member of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team, located and confronted the suspect in a nearby hallway. The officer fired a single round at the suspect, who also fired a shot toward the officer. The suspect sustained a fatal injury in the exchange, eliminating the threat.
The school was placed on a lockdown and first responders were able to provide medical attention to those injured. Unfortunately, the female student died from her wounds at a nearby hospital.
“No question that [Deputy First Class Gaskill’s] actions, his quick and immediate actions, potentially saved a great number of people,” St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron said.
“In this tragic story, we can be thankful for that fact that Deputy First Class Gaskill was at that school that morning,” Memorial Fund Chief Executive Officer Craig W. Floyd said. “He undoubtedly saved many more lives with his bravery and training. It is with great honor we present him the Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Award for May 2018.”
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.
Deputy First Class Blaine Gaskill, along with the other Officer of the Month Award recipients for 2018, will be honored at a special awards ceremony in Washington, DC, in 2019.
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About the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund
Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a private non-profit organization dedicated to telling the story of American law enforcement and making it safer for those who serve. The Memorial Fund maintains the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, which contains the names of 21,541 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. The Memorial Fund is now building the new National Law Enforcement Museum, which will tell the story of American law enforcement by providing visitors a “walk in the shoes” experience. The Museum is working to expand and enrich the relationship shared by law enforcement and the community through the Museum’s educational journeys, immersive exhibitions, and insightful programs. For more information, visit www.LawMemorial.org.