Sheriff Kiernan Donahue says he was moved by the story of a father and a son depending on each other. Thursday, Donahue honored Jared Moore for helping his father, Sergeant Joe Moore, live through an asthma attack compounded by double pneumonia that nearly hospitalized him earlier.
"I kept thinking it would be so easy not to take the next breath and he just got right in my face and kept saying 'Don't quit on me, Dad, don’t quit on me' while he was on with 9-1-1," said Joe Moore at his son's ceremony.
"He would close his eyes, and when he would close his eyes I would say, 'Come on, Dad, don't leave me like this," said Jared Moore.
The teen called 9-1-1 despite his father telling him to wait until his mother got home. Those precious moments may have been what saved Sergeant Moore from dying.
"I would not have made it, I would not have made it," said Moore, holding back tears.
The story of Jared’s heroics landed on the desk of Sheriff Donahue a few weeks after the incident that almost took the life of one of his deputies. In a ceremony reserved to honor length of service and exceptional service in the line of duty, Jared Moore received the only standing ovation for saving his father's life.
"I thought, you know, what if Joe hadn't made it through that? When they gave me the paperwork to read I said, 'I'm going to have a hard time getting through this'," said Sheriff Donahue.
Everyone did make it. Sheriff Donahue held back tears of his own in telling the story but had to ask Reverend Bill Roscoe for help to finish.
Donahue said, "For me it was the son and the father, and depending on each other, and either they're going to get through this or not, and that young man was able to find that conviction."
For Jared, the certificate and the applause were nothing compared to keeping his father with him. "I wasn't thinking, 'Hm, maybe I can get an award for this.' I was thinking, 'I want my dad to stay here with me and I want my dad to be able to see me at my sporting events and I want him to not leave us,' an emotional Jared Moore said. "All I was doing was just trying to help him."