3 Easley police officers recognized for saving trooper's life

From The South Carolina Department of Public Safety

COLUMBIA, SC – The South Carolina Department of Public Safety Monday night recognized three Easley police officers and one Pickens County Sheriff's officer in a ceremony at the Easley City Council meeting for their heroic actions in saving the life of L/Cpl. K.K. Bratcher on March 12.

SC Department of Public Safety Director Leroy Smith, Highway Patrol Col. Mike Oliver, and troopers, along with L/Cpl. Bratcher's parents – Kenny and Betty Bratcher – had an opportunity to thank the officers who helped Trooper Bratcher. The four officers helped pull him from his burning patrol car after it caught fire following a collision.

Capt. Michael Warren, Troop Three commander, read a letter from L/Cpl. Bratcher who is still undergoing rehabilitation for his injuries:

"As a law enforcement officer, you know going in what the risk is every day but it isn't something that you constantly have on your mind. Every day you get up, put on the uniform and do the job. A career in law enforcement is a calling no matter what the arena, and it's mine to do and my privilege to do it.

If you've been on the job for any length of time, you know someone or have experienced through the law enforcement family someone having an accident or being in the wrong place at the wrong time. You learn to pull together and do everything you can to make it right, make it better for those touched personally. This time it happened to me.

You never quite understand those people you hear saying things like 'words are not enough' not until it is your life, spared by the grace and will of God – saved by willing hearts, cool heads and strong hands of brother officers. It does not matter what uniform is worn, jurisdiction or rank, it truly is a family of like souls who take personally any affront to another officer and a family willing to risk themselves for one another.

'Thank you' is inadequate to describe the gift you gave me – but sharing the responsibility and understanding the call of what we do every day. I know in my heart that each of you will understand the feelings behind the words which are all that I can offer. I will recover. I will return to work and I know that I will be in the presence of four heroes in my law enforcement family. I know words cannot describe the action of these heroes, but may God bless them, and I am truly indebted to them for their selfless, heroic actions.