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Lakewood heroes are honored

Lakewood heroes are honored

The City of Lakewood held its annual Award of Valor luncheon on November 8 to thank the men and women of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and Fire Department and the community volunteers who protect and serve Lakewood.

Sheriff’s Deputy Neil Wendland received the Dave Powell Community Policing Award, named in honor of the late Deputy Dave Powell, who was killed in the line of duty in 2002. Deputy Wendland was recognized for his positive and high-energy attitude, and the many acclamations he has received from residents for his kindness, outstanding service and professionalism. As a field training officer, Deputy Wendland has been regarded as a patient and respectful mentor who consistently demonstrates a high level of expertise to his trainees and peers. 

The city honored L.A. County firefighters based in Lakewood for combating several dangerous residential fires over the past year, a Lakewood-based captain for over 30 years of service, and numerous firefighters who were deployed for lengthy periods of time in other parts of the state and nation during recent disasters. Their extensive disaster-training and deployments make them valuable assets in our community should an earthquake or other disaster ever strike here.

The city also recognized several Lakewood residents for their volunteer service in public safety, either as part of a program like Neighborhood Watch or the Lakewood Sheriff’s Station Volunteers. One such honoree was Block Captain Joseph White, pictured above with Mayor Diane DuBois and Sheriff Jim McDonnell, recognized for his many years of active community support through Neighborhood Watch.

Residents were also honored for their decision to get involved to help their fellow residents in need. Dale Holdmann was recognized for giving CPR to a man he found collapsed on a sidewalk as he was driving home from Lakewood Center. In a dramatic ending to the luncheon, the victim came forward to thank Dale for saving his life.

Thank you to all of Lakewood’s heroes!

Lakewood CityTV has produced a video of the luncheon where you can see all the stories of Lakewood’s sworn and civilian heroes. Go to

You can also read the stories and see the event program at