MIAMI (CBS4) – Miami-Dade Police Director James Loftus took time Wednesday to honor those who quietly serve the community without recognition; the medical staff at the Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital.
“In grateful appreciation for the expert medical care provided to the Miami-Dade Police Department, past present and absolutely future,” said Director James Loftus during the presentation of a commemorative plaque and the Departmental Certificate of Appreciation in recognition of the outstanding professional and medical care offered to MDPD officers injured while in the line of duty.
During the ceremony, the room was filled with officers who were injured in the line of duty, including Miami-Dade officer Carlos Castillo who was treated and recovered at JMH.
“Because of what they did I’m back to what I consider normal,” Castillo said.
In April of 2010, Castillo was badly beaten with a cinder block while working undercover in Liberty City. His severe injuries included ten broken ribs.
“I wanted to be here just to express my gratitude toward Jackson and everyone who helped me get better,” Castillo said.
While the daily life-saving performance of all who work at the Ryder Trauma Center was recognized, so were the lives that were lost.
“Sometimes even with all your capabilities you can’t change the inevitable, someone gets lost. I’m talking about Amanda Haworth,” Loftus said during the ceremony.
Amanda Haworth was one of two officers gunned down in January 2011 in a police shootout. Her partner Officer Rosie Diaz took time to show her appreciation for the staff’s effort to try to save Amanda’s life as she gave one of a doctor a hug.
In 2006, another officer, Camile Araujo was involved in a work-related car accident. She was in a coma for 6 weeks.
“I only saw my family and friends for those 4 visiting hours when I woke from my coma, but when they weren’t there it’s like a had a family there all the time,” Araujo said.
For the men and women of the Miami-Dade Police Department it’s the Jackson Memorial Hospital family they turn to.
“If bad things happen get me to that hospital, get me to Jackson,” Loftus said.