By Robert Jordan
Dunn Daily Record
ANGIER – A restaurant employee in Angier owes his life to the quick response of an Angier police officer.
Martin Becerra of Raleigh is an employee at Tortilleria Y Taqueria Leon, a Mexican restaurant on Logan Court in Angier. After the restaurant closed on March 3, Becerra and other employees of the establishment were mixing the ingredients for the next day’s tortillas. He was using a large commerical mixer when his arm accidentally became entangled inside the mixing bowl.
He severed an artery in his arm. Fellow employees were able to stop the mixer and help Becerra to remove his arm from the machine. There was a large amount of bleeding. Those with the victim attempted to control his bleeding by packing the wound with a shirt and other items.
Harnett County 9-1-1 was called. The paramedic assigned to Angier was on an earlier call and out of district at the hospital. The next closest paramedic was the one posted in the Coats-Grove district. That unit was dispatched to the traumatic injury at the Angier restaurant.
Due to extended travel time from Coats to Angier, police officers on duty in Angier were dispatched to render initial aid to Becerra until EMS could arrive.
Angier Police Department Cpl. Levi Creek arrived on the scene and began to assess the patient’s needs.
“When I ran into the business, I immediately saw the amount of blood already on the floor. Those attending to Mr. Becerra had done their best to help control the bleeding, but he was still losing a lot of blood,” said Creek.
The corporal went on to explain that he immediately resorted to his training for emergencies. Creek said he quickly became aware that the amount of blood coming from the wound appeared to be a severed artery. Creek next applied a tourniquet to Becerra’s arm to curb the blood loss. Those efforts were successful. Creek remained with the injured man until EMS arrived.
Angier Police Lt. David Adams told The Daily Record, “We later received word from the medical personnel that had Creek not acted as quickly as he did, the man probably would have lost his life.”
At the April 5 meeting of the Angier Board of Commissioners, the mayor presented Creek with a Life Saving Valor Award for his actions on the night of March 3.
“Really, it was just another day on the job for me,” said Creek. “I didn’t think anything of it. Any of the guys and girls I work with would have done the same thing.”
Creek’s peers at work think differently. Becerra has this law enforcement professional to thank for stepping up and saving his life.
Mr. Becerra was not available for comment at press time.
“I’m not one for (seeking) public recognition,” Creek shared. “I do want people to understand that when police show up we want the best outcome. We handle many situations every shift that have happy endings.”