Rangers

From left: Bucks County Commissioners Chair Rob Loughery; park rangers Joseph Marquart and George Shaver; Steven Mawhinney, chief of the Bucks County Park Rangers; and Commissioners Diane Ellis-Marseglia and Charles Martin.

WRIGHTSTOWN >> The Bucks County Commissioners on August 14 commended two of the county’s park rangers in recognition of their service to the community.

During a meeting at the Middletown Grange Fair, Commissioner Diane Ellis-Marseglia presented letters of commendation to Rangers George Shaver and Joseph Marquart for professionally handling two suicidal individuals in the county’s parks.

Reading from the first letter, Ellis-Marseglia said on July 14, Ranger Shaver “ably and professionally handled a situation in which a young man was on the verge of attempting suicide. By promptly responding to this man’s crisis, you prevented him from harming himself and helped direct him into the mental health care he needed to stabilize his condition and move forward with his life.”

At 5:44 p.m., Shaver was dispatched to the Area E parking lot of Peace Valley Park on New Galena Road in Chalfont for a report of a man in a vehicle who was suicidal and wanted to seek treatment.

When he arrived, the 27-year-old man was still sitting in his car, crying as he spoke to 911 on his cell phone. He informed Shaver that he wanted to seek help at a hospital and asked if he would take him there.

As the man was gathering his belongings, Shaver noticed a plastic shopping bag on the passenger side floor of the car with a rope sticking out of it. When he questioned the man about it, the man acknowledged that it was a rope with which he intended to hang himself, and agreed to hand the bag, which also contained a metal carabiner shackle, to the ranger.

Shaver then transported the man to Doylestown Hospital’s Crisis Services, allowing him to keep his cell phone so that he could talk to his sister en route. After arriving at the hospital, the man was placed in a room with security and other personnel while Shaver helped to fill out paperwork needed for an involuntary admission to a mental health facility.

At this point, the man became agitated and expressed his unwillingness to enter a facility or to take his medications, further evidence of the value of Shaver’s intervention and initiation of 302 proceedings, said Ellis-Marseglia.

“We present this commendation not only to recognize a job well done under sensitive circumstances, but also to commend you for participating in the county’s 40-hour Crisis Intervention Training and for putting that training to effective use,” said Ellis-Marseglia. “You demonstrated a level of excellence that we hope all county employees strive to achieve, and we join all Bucks County residents in offering our gratitude.”

Ellis-Marseglia presented the second Letter of Commendation to Ranger Marquart “in recognition of your alert service to our community.”

On July 3, Ranger Marquart “ably and professionally handled a situation in which a young person was threatening suicide.

“By gathering pertinent information and treating this young man with skill and compassion, you prevented him from harming himself and helped direct him into the mental health care he needed to stabilize his condition and move forward with his life,” said Ellis-Marseglia.

At 10:25 p.m., Ranger Marquart was patrolling Dark Hollow Park, off Mill Road in Jamison, when he discovered two unoccupied vehicles in the parking lot. He soon encountered three young people who were searching for a 20-year-old friend who had sent them text messages threatening to harm himself.

His friends had found the young man walking along the Neshaminy Creek nearby, but he rebuffed their efforts to intercede. One of them informed Ranger Marquart that the young man had not taken his anti-depression medication that day.

Ranger Marquart enlisted one of the friends and the Warwick Township Police to try to contact the young man’s mother, who lives nearby.

As the ranger continued to gather information, the young man appeared in the parking lot, muddy and sweating. Ranger Marquart seated him in the back of his patrol car, gave him a bottle of water and spoke to him.

In response to questions from the ranger, the young man acknowledged that he had not taken his medication and that he thought constantly of killing himself.

By then the young man’s mother had arrived. Ranger Marquart told her what had happened, and that he would be transporting her son to Doylestown Hospital’s Crisis Services. At the hospital he helped fill out the paperwork needed for an involuntary admission to a mental health facility.

“We present this commendation not only to recognize a job well done under sensitive circumstances, but also to commend you for participating in the county’s 40-hour Crisis Intervention Training and for putting that training to effective use,” said Ellis-Marseglia. “You demonstrated a level of excellence that we hope all county employees strive to achieve, and we join all Bucks County residents in offering our gratitude.”

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