VCSO Recognition Ceremony Honors Heroics

A packed courthouse watched as four new Vanderburgh County Sheriff's deputies took their oaths Monday, embarking on a career which is anything but average.


"I don't think anybody can ever be prepared for what you see in this line of work,” Sheriff’s Deputy Brandon Harrison said.


But the four sworn in are far from average, including Jackie Elder.


"There’s hundreds and hundreds of applicants, and Sheriff and his command staff picked us, fortunately for us,” Elder said.


The ceremony, however, was not only dedicated to the young guns, but to the seasoned veterans who went above any beyond.


One group of deputies was recognized for their response to a Darmstadt home in January.


"It was probably one of the most bloody messes I’ve ever seen in 37 years of law enforcement,” Sheriff Dave Wedding said.


Authorities say Clint Loehrlein shot and killed his wife Sherry that day. He's also accused of shooting his daughter Nicole, and shooting and stabbing her twin sister, Cynthia.


"The biggest hero of the day, probably was Cynthia Lorelighn that day, who went next door with her injuries and stuff, was able to get over there, probably save her sister's life by getting out of the house, giving her sister time to hide from her father,” said Harrison, one of the deputies who responded.


The neighbors who took Cynthia in, Ann and Gordon Hall, also received awards for their heroism.


"And I just couldn't imagine what they experienced waking up and having somebody knocking on their door that was completely covered in blood being pursued by a murderer,” Sheriff Wedding said.


"A little bit upset. We've kind of been able to work through things, and this sort of brings everything back,” Ann Hall said.


Other heroes recognized also shared the Halls' mixed emotions. Their awards are reminders of the tragedies they helped mitigate, but also motivation for the next generation of heroes.


"That’s definitely a goal, and it's intimidating, but it's also very encouraging and it makes you set the bar high for yourself, so that's exciting,” Elder said.

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