Conservation officers recognized by DNR for lifesaving efforts

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) honored two of its conservation officers after their work helped save two lives earlier this year.

Conservation officers Sean Williams and Jeremy Henke were recently recognized for their lifesaving efforts while responding to two separate emergencies.

Williams, a member of the St. Louis County Rescue Squad, was recognized for saving the life of a man who snowshoed three miles into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and was unable to free himself from a deadfall tree in February.

The rescued man didn’t have the equipment required to spend an unexpected night in the wilderness and likely would not have survived if not for Williams, the DNR says.

Henke, stationed in Albert Lea, responded to a call about an unconscious person near his location experiencing a cardiac event in May. An Albert Lea police officer began CPR while Henke prepared an AED to administer a shock to the man, who was brought to the hospital by ambulance shortly after.

As of this spring, the DNR says it is a requirement for conservation officers to carry an AED, and that was the first time one was used to save a person’s life.

“Conservation officers have a long, proud tradition of helping people in need,” said Col. Rodmen Smith, director of the DNR Enforcement Division. “Officers Henke and Williams answered the call – as all conservation officers do – and this recognition is well-deserved.”