Two Middletown public safety officers — Police Officer Mike Davis and Firefighter Scott Bruggeman — received Heart of a Hero awards posthumously Sunday during Berachah Church’s Police and Fire Appreciation Service.
Davis died Nov. 13, 2013 at Atrium Medical Center. He was 65.
He was a police officer with the Middletown Division of Police for 44 years, retiring in 2011. He was a patrolman, a motorcycle officer, worked narcotics and served as director of the city’s Safety Town program and as a school resource officer for 26 years.
Berachah Pastor Lamar Ferrell presented the award to Davis’ brother, Rick.
Rick Davis said Safety Town was his brother’s “legacy” in Middletown.
He called receiving the award “a real honor” and then he started crying.
“I miss him every day,” Davis said.
Ferrell remembered that Mike Davis was baptized during the last service at Berachah’s location on First Avenue before the church moved to the former Verity Middle School on Johns Road. When Davis was diagnosed with cancer, he called Ferrell to his hospital room and gave his life to Jesus, he said.
He called Davis “the face of the police department” because of his years serving the community.
Bruggeman, a retired Middletown firefighter and U.S. Marine, died Jan. 18, 2016. He was 45.
The 1988 Fenwick High School graduate battled heart disease for almost two years. He had worked with the Middletown Division of Fire for 20 years, retiring in 2015. Bruggeman’s life tragedy turned on March 18, 2014, when he was restraining an uncooperative patient in the Atrium Medical Center emergency room, said his mother, Ginger Bruggeman.
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He had a heart attack during the incident, and later was diagnosed with sarcoidosis, an inflammatory disease that affects multiple organs in the body, which started in his lungs and eventually damaged his heart.
His award was given to his uncle and Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli. Bruggeman’s parents, Dave and Ginger Bruggeman, were unable to attend the ceremony.
Chief Lolli, who attended the service with Middletown Police Chief Rodney Muterspaw and some of the city’s firefighters and police officers, said the award was “totally unexpected” and he wanted to express his “very heartfelt” appreciation to Berachah.
“Scottie was a great guy,” Lolli said after the service. “He bent over backward helping people. Scottie was really dedicated to the job and dedicated to the people.”
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Ferrell said Bruggeman “fought valiantly” against heart disease, like he did as a U.S. Marine.
“He was a man’s man,” Ferrell said. “Just a powerful, powerful individual.”
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