NCPD Honors Policemen, EMS Personnel Who Saved Officer’s Life; Four Clergy Members Made Police Chaplains

Since losing consciousness after going into cardiac arrest while on a treadmill at New Canaan Police Department headquarters in May, Officer Jeff Pollock said he’s had many months to reflect on how different life would have been for others close to him, had two fellow officers and four members of New Canaan Emergency Medical Services members not jumped into action. He’s thought about his parents, sisters, wife and—perhaps, most of all—young son and daughter. “What would they do without their daddy?” Pollock told more than 100 people, including his family, gathered in the Wagner Room at New Canaan High School for a special NCPD ceremony. “They have such a long way to go, so much to learn, so many things to experience, so many milestones to achieve? Would they be able to do it without me?”

Thanks to six people that Pollock called “the heroes that saved my life”—Officers Rex Sprosta and Tom Callinan, and EMS volunteers Russ Kimes, Liam Bowers, Zach Harbage and Wes Yilanes—no one will have to know. 

Police Chief Leon Krolikowski presented the officers with the department’s Medical/Lifesaving Award for their swift action and presented special plaques also to the four medical services personnel in recognition of their actions.

Two New Canaan Policemen Save Fellow Officer’s Life

For New Canaan’s first responders, every life saved is a proud testament to expert training, courage and calm actions in the the most difficult circumstances. In recent years, members of the New Canaan Police Department have been honored for saving the life of a local man who had gone into cardiac arrest, administering Narcan to an individual who had overdosed and assisting a choking woman. On Saturday, two officers—Rex Sprosta and Tom Callinan—saved one of their own. According to Police Chief Leon Krolikowski, at about 7 a.m. on May 17, Officer Jeffrey Pollock “suffered a medical emergency” while taking the department’s physical fitness test. “Officer Rex Sprosta who was administering our Department’s physical fitness test and Officer Tom Callinan who was working the patrol shift, rendered life-saving care to Officer Pollock,” Krolikowski said in a press release.

Did You Hear … ?

Quick update on the closely followed renovation and restoration of the famed former Huguette Clark estate on Dan’s Highway: The New Canaan Building Department issued a permit Jan. 12 for a 60-by-22-foot in-ground pool. The estimated $105,000 job will be completed by Signature Pools of Norwalk, according to the permit. ***

Two of New Canaan’s most prominent and effective nonprofit organizations—the New Canaan Land Trust (membership info here) and New Canaan Community Foundation (information on giving here)—held their annual meetings Thursday night. Some 200 supporters attended each event, held at the Country Club of New Canaan and Waveny House, respectively.

Catching Distracted (and Just Bad) Drivers: Sitting Shotgun with New Canaan Police

New Canaan Police Officer Tom Callinan steered an unmarked Chevy Tahoe off of Farm Road and into the South School lot on a recent weekday morning, circled and swung back around, parking the SUV so that he could see clear across the intersection, the access road into New Canaan High School and Waveny beyond spread out before him. “We’ll set up right here,” said Callinan, sworn in last June. “We can see people coming both ways.”

Not long after—at exactly 11:58 a.m.—a black Jeep Laredo 4×4 brazenly ran the stop sign (“He didn’t even pump the brakes”) and swung left into the NCHS lot, prompting Callinan to pull forward and pull over the 17-year-old motorist. This time, the teen—whom Callinan said was “extremely respectful” and apologized straightaway for the moving violation—received a written warning that will go into his driving record in case it happens again. During the same late-morning enforcement shift, Callinan from the same vantage point pulled over a woman traveling along Farm who had dropped her hand the moment she spotted him watching (“She just dropped her phone,” he said as he pulled out and hit the flashers)—another day in the life of a New Canaan police officer addressing what the department’s chief has called “a new traffic safety epidemic” in town: distracted driving.