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The Missouri Miner

Missouri S&T's Student Newspaper
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EST. 1915

S&T students receive humanitarian awards

Mary Helen Stoltz

Press Release

Missouri S&T Police Chief Doug Roberts and Ron Smith, chief of Rolla Fire and Rescue, surprised a Missouri S&T student Tuesday, Nov. 27, with an award for his life-saving efforts while working as a lifeguard on campus.

The student, Kevin McPherson, received the recognition during Tuesday evening’s Missouri S&T Student Council meeting at the Havener Center on campus. He was unaware that he would receive the recognition, believing he had been invited to the meeting to provide an update on the swim team.

On Tuesday, Oct. 30, McPherson, a senior in electrical engineering from Oakdale, Minnesota, and a member of the S&T swimming team, pulled a student from the pool at the Gale Bullman Building and performed CPR until she regained consciousness. Roberts says McPherson saved the woman’s life, and he wanted to recognize McPherson’s good deed.

“We are proud of Kevin for responding quickly and resuscitating the drowning victim,” Roberts says. “I know her husband and her family are grateful, too, that he was there and able to help.”

Following Roberts’ presentation, Smith presented McPherson with a Rolla Fire and Rescue “challenge coin” in recognition of the rescue.

In addition to being a member of the swimming team, McPherson helps coach local swim students through the Rolla Fins Swim Club. In the 2017-18 school year, McPherson earned All-American honors as part of the Miners’ 400- and 800-yard freestyle relay teams, both of which finished among the top eight at the NCAA II Championships. (McPherson pictured below)

Missouri S&T Police Chief Doug Roberts surprised Missouri S&T freshman Dalton Gerdes of Gerald, Missouri, with a STEP UP! program pin award on Tuesday, Nov. 27, for helping stranded motorists in Rolla earlier this month.

On Nov. 14, officers responded to a report of a stranded vehicle near University Drive and Highway 63 in Rolla. When they arrived, they noted that Gerdes was already assisting an elderly couple whose trailer had become separated from their vehicle.

Gerdes and officers helped the couple temporarily reconnect their trailer to move the car to a nearby university parking lot. He then located the parts and tools needed to repair the hitch. Gerdes helped them make the repairs despite the temperatures hovering at about 25 degrees.

“Mr. Gerdes ‘stepped up’ and went above and beyond to help out his fellow man,” says University Police Chief Doug Roberts. “Thank you Mr. Gerdes for your dedication to safety and security.”

Roberts recognized Gerdes, an aerospace engineering major at Missouri S&T, during the Missouri S&T Student Council meeting Tuesday in the Havener Center on campus.

Roberts says the police department recorded his act of kindness on the Missouri S&T STEP UP! Pin Program registry. The bystander intervention program encourages S&T community members to help others and to ensure the safety and well-being of self and others. For more information about STEP UP! Visit


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