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Seventeen-year-old honored for saving an Excelsior Springs police officer’s life

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The Excelsior Springs Police Department and the Clay County Sheriff’s Office honored 17-year-old Ava Donegan for saving an officer’s life at a ceremony on Thursday. In early October, Donegan put a tourniquet on an ESPD officer after he had been shot in the shoulder and the wrist. “I still think anyone would have done it,” Donegan said. “But I’m very grateful to be here.” Clay County Sheriff Will Akin presented Donegan with a Certificate of Recognition and a challenge coin. ESPD Chief Greg Dull also gave her a challenge coin. “She had no obligation to help a law enforcement officer in a life-or-death situation,” Sarah Boyd, Clay County Sheriff’s Office public information officer, said. Excelsior Springs Mayor Sharon Powell also gave a speech recognizing Donegan and gifted her a $2,000 scholarship on behalf of Chuck Anderson Ford. “You will always be known to be a brave young woman who made a difference,” Powell said, reading a letter from Chuck Anderson Ford. Donegan didn’t know what to expect heading into the ceremony, but said she was grateful to be there. “I feel very grateful and I’m just proud of what I did,” she said. On Oct. 1, Donegan was in Excelsior Springs to go thrift shopping with a friend. The two were stopped at a red light at the intersection of Route 10 and Corum Road when they found themselves in the middle of a crime scene. Two EPSD officers tried to pull over a driver wanted on a warrant for assaulting a law enforcement officer. The driver shot one of the officers in the shoulder and the wrist. The second officer returned fire, shooting the suspect in the head. KMBC 9 talked to Donegan following the shooting. “I saw the cop get out of the car and then I saw him get shot a few times,” Donegan said. She said her car was just in front of the shooter’s truck at the intersection. She also said she had never heard gunshots before. “Somehow, I blinked my eye and the cop who was shot was right in front of my car. He was asking me to get out and help put his tourniquet on,” she said. “He told me that it was completely numb, and his hand was completely limp.” Donegan helped to put his tourniquet on, get his vest off, and helped him use his radio to call it in. The officer has been through multiple surgeries but is expected to be OK.

The Excelsior Springs Police Department and the Clay County Sheriff’s Office honored 17-year-old Ava Donegan for saving an officer’s life at a ceremony on Thursday.

In early October, Donegan put a tourniquet on an ESPD officer after he had been shot in the shoulder and the wrist.

“I still think anyone would have done it,” Donegan said. “But I’m very grateful to be here.”

Clay County Sheriff Will Akin presented Donegan with a Certificate of Recognition and a challenge coin. ESPD Chief Greg Dull also gave her a challenge coin.

“She had no obligation to help a law enforcement officer in a life-or-death situation,” Sarah Boyd, Clay County Sheriff’s Office public information officer, said.

Excelsior Springs Mayor Sharon Powell also gave a speech recognizing Donegan and gifted her a $2,000 scholarship on behalf of Chuck Anderson Ford.

“You will always be known to be a brave young woman who made a difference,” Powell said, reading a letter from Chuck Anderson Ford.

Donegan didn’t know what to expect heading into the ceremony, but said she was grateful to be there.

“I feel very grateful and I’m just proud of what I did,” she said.

On Oct. 1, Donegan was in Excelsior Springs to go thrift shopping with a friend. The two were stopped at a red light at the intersection of Route 10 and Corum Road when they found themselves in the middle of a crime scene.

Two EPSD officers tried to pull a driver over wanted on a warrant for assaulting a law enforcement officer. The driver shot one of the officers in the shoulder and the wrist. The second officer returned fire, shooting the suspect in the head.

KMBC 9 spoke to Donegan following the shooting.

“I saw the cop get out of the car and then I saw him get shot a few times,” Donegan said.

She said her car was just in front of the shooter’s truck at the intersection. She also said she had never heard gunshots before.

“Somehow, I blinked my eye and the cop who was shot was right in front of my car. He was asking me to get out and help put his tourniquet on,” she said. “He told me that it was completely numb, and his hand was completely limp.”

Donegan helped to put his tourniquet on, get his vest off, and helped him use his radio to call it in.

The officer has been through multiple surgeries but is expected to be OK.