On the morning of June 9. 2010, Division 2 companies responded to a three vehicle accident on the northbound 405 Freeway at National Boulevard.
First on-scene LAFD members were off-duty A/O Hollyn Bullock and Captain Kristin Crowley. They were driving north on the 405 and pulled over to assist the injured civilians and CHP Motorcycle Officer Philip Ortiz, who was in traumatic full arrest.
The accident scene presented Crowley and Bullock with significant challenges: a multi-patient, three vehicle accident with a vehicle rollover, and a patient (Officer Ortiz) ejected into the rear window of the front vehicle. With an active fuel spill, heavy traffic on the freeway, and glass and debris throughout the scene, they extricated Officer Ortiz from underneath the debris in the front vehicle and initiated CPR and other measures, along with another off-duty private EMT.
When LAFD rescue vehicles arrived, A/O Bullock and Captain Crowley made a seamless transfer of care so that Officer Ortiz could be quickly transported to UCLA Medical Center.
Five days after the accident, Bullock and Crowley visited the family and friends of Officer Ortiz at UCLA. They were moved by the outpouring of support and accolades they received for their valiant efforts. After spending time with Mrs. Ortiz, they were escorted into Officer Ortiz’s hospital room where they paid their respects and wishes for a full recovery.
Eight days later Officer Ortiz passed away as a result of his injuries. While the death of Officer Ortiz has weighed heavily on the minds of both Captain Crowley and A/O Bullock, it must be noted that their quick and decisive actions clearly gave him the best chance for survival.
Captain Kristin Crowley and Apparatus Operator Hollyn Bullock were awarded Special Commendations for performing an act during emergency conditions requiring initiative and ability worthy of recognition.