By TERRY GROOVER
Canadian County Sheriff Chris West and two of his deputies were honored over the weekend by the Oklahoma Sheriffs’ Association.
West, who was elected to the office in 2016, was selected as this year’s Sheriff of the Year for Oklahoma.
It is the latest honor for the Yukon native who has a lengthy history in law enforcement.
Earlier this year, he was elected to the board of the directors for the National Sheriffs’ Association. He also serves on the Oklahoma Sheriffs’ Association board as the second vice president.
“I was surprised,” West said.
“To be picked by your peers to be sheriff of the year, it is a tremendous honor and very humbling.”
West said he tries to serve the county the only way he knows how.
“I go to work every day and do the best job I can. I work with great people at both the Canadian County sheriff’s office and other law enforcement agencies and other sheriffs. We have a great team in Oklahoma. We are very fortunate,” he said. “We couldn’t do anything without the great support we have.”
West said he is very honored.
“I go to work every day and be me. I do what I think is the right thing to do,” he said.
That means putting God first.
“My spirituality is important to me. I pray that God lets me be the best person I can be every day. I look forward to seeing what he has in store for me,” West said.
Meanwhile, two of West’s deputies also were honored with lifesaving awards.
Deputies Robert Baysinger and Jeffrey Bouillon were honored for their efforts following the May 27 tornado in El Reno.
The two deputies were on duty when the tornado struck an El Reno trailer park and motel.
The two were credited with running into the rubble to search for victims.
According to West, his two deputies had to crawl through sheet metal and other debris searching for victims.
The two helped rescue a victim who had multiple injuries after a home collapsed.
According to the nomination, the two provided lifesaving care, including placing tourniquets over the affected areas to stop the bleeding. They were eventually able to carry the victim to a safe area where additional treatment was provided.
“I am very proud of the association for recognizing their efforts,” West said. “We knew on May 26 that we would be submitting their nominations.”
West said the department has a number of deputies who are dedicated to saving lives.
“We have a sheriff’s office with a bunch of hard-working and dedicated personnel in every division. Not only deputies, but dispatchers, workers at the detention center, mechanics, house-keeping and our records department,” West said.
“I am very honored to be sheriff,” West said.