Family expresses gratitude to OSP rescuer

Ashland, Ore. – One family is expressing her thanks to an Oregon State Police trooper after he helped her and others after a Christmas Eve crash in southern Oregon.

The Stevens family wrote an email to OSP expressing her gratitude for Trooper Tom Harrison actions following the crash:

“On December 24, 2016, we were in the snow covered mountains on Hwy. 66 in route to Ashland when we lost control of our car and slid off the highway and down an embankment. Three additional cars slid as well and became disabled. It was clearly a treacherous area with great vulnerability for serious incidents. In all, there were 9 people including an elderly man, a young child, and two people (who happened to be on heart monitors) that were out of their vehicles in freezing temperatures waiting for help. The chaos and worry ended when State Trooper Tom Harrison arrived on the scene. He took immediate action by first ensuring the safety of all. He implemented safety protocols for east and west bound traffic thereby averting additional vehicles from going over the embankment. He coordinated efforts between multiple agencies – volunteer fire, paramedics, ODOT, tow truck drivers, etc. He saw to it that the people who had been out in the freezing temperatures for over an hour, had access to warmth in the paramedic van. He did all of this in a very direct and decisive yet caring and compassionate manner.

We are grateful to the Oregon State Police and especially to Trooper Harrison, whose rescue actions enabled many people to safely make it to their destination on Christmas Eve. He displayed exemplary skills and leadership in helping and protecting the public. Your department has reason to be immensely proud of this fine state trooper.

Our heartfelt thank-you to Trooper Tom Harrison!


Melinda Stephens, Mark Stephens and Michael Stephens”

OSP responded on their Facebook page, writing in part, “Thank you Melinda and your family for sending this thank you. We are so thankful that no one was injured and that you made home safely.”

© 2024 KOBI-TV NBC5. All rights reserved unless otherwise stated.

Skip to content