Avery County Officer Receives Medal of Valor

Sgt. Lee Buchanan of the Avery County Sheriff’s Department, was awarded the Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor on Tuesday, February 20th  in Washington D.C. Sgt. Buchanan was among 12 individuals to be presented the award by President Donald Trump at a ceremony in the White House. In February of 2016, while off duty, Buchanan pulled a man out of a burning car after coming upon a two car accident in Elizabethton, Tennessee. The driver of one of the cars was dead at the scene, but Buchanan and Emergency Medical Technician Sean Ochsenbein from the Putnam Rescue Squad were able to get the door of the burning car pulled open to save the other driver. The Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor is the highest national award for valor by a public safety officer