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Rotary Club of Buckhannon-Upshur President Alan Hager presents Upshur County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Mike Coffman with a Spirit of Service Award at the club's March 7 meeting. / Photo by Monica Zalaznik

Chief Deputy says he’s gained a new perspective on life following active shooter incident

BUCKHANNON – The Rotary Club of Buckhannon-Upshur officially presented one of their first Rotary Spirit of Service Awards to a police officer injured by an active shooter.

The Rotary Club presented the new award to Chief Deputy of the Upshur County Sheriff’s Office Mike Coffman and the Buckhannon Fire Department during their Feb. 21 meeting. However, Coffman could not attend in February due to a medical appointment related to his injury, so the club presented his award during their March 7 meeting.

Rotary Club of Buckhannon-Upshur President Alan Hager thanked Coffman for his selfless service on June 16 during the active shooter incident on I-79.

“This is to honor your brave and wise action during that particular incident to recognize that it’s not just what happens at a particular time; it’s the fact that people serve, and you serve and are willing to do that anytime and every time,” Hager said. “You never know what any given day will hold, so please accept this Spirit of Service Award.”

Coffman said he has gained a new appreciation for life after the ordeal. “You don’t know what any day will hold, and I feel like I’m pretty young – I’m 46 – but I never realized the value of life,” Cofman said. “I thought I did, but I learned a lot.”

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