Clarksville Police Officer Recognized for Saving Crash Victim’s Life

The crash shut down the northbound lanes of Interstate 65 on July 6, 2023.

CLARKSVILLE, IN (August 2, 2023) – A Clarksville Police Officer is being called a hero for saving the life of a crash victim on Interstate 65 in Clarksville. The crash happened just before 5:30 pm in the northbound lanes of I-65 just past the Veterans Parkway exit. Clarksville Police say a Ford F-150 side-swiped a semi, which ripped the right side of the vehicle to shreds.

“I happened to be driving by the crash scene that evening and witnessed the interstate being shut down,” said Ken Conklin, Clarksville’s Communications Director. “My wife and I were both shocked at the destruction of the vehicle and didn’t think anyone could have survived that crash.”

Fortunately for the passenger in that vehicle, Clarksville Police Officer Zachary Skaggs happened to be in the area and responded to the scene quickly. When he arrived, he found the passenger still in the vehicle with severe injuries including a deep cut to his leg. Officer Skaggs worked quickly to free the victim and applied a tourniquet to his leg. EMS crews arrived a short time later and took over the medical aid for that victim. The EMS personnel noted that if not for Officer Skaggs’ quick work, the victim would most likely have died from the injuries sustained in the crash.

“There are several character traits that set Officer Skaggs apart from others,” said Clarksville Police Chief Mark Palmer. “The one that stands out the most is his ability to set the example. He won’t ask someone to do something that he isn’t willing to do first. It is what makes him a good officer and a leader for these new officers.”

In recognition of his quick thinking and act of service, Officer Skaggs was presented with a Life Saving Award from Chief Palmer at Tuesday’s Clarksville Town Council meeting. Officer Skaggs received a standing ovation from Town leaders, staff, and residents. He received a certificate as well as a special Life Saving pin which he will be able to wear on his uniform.

When given the chance to speak, Officer Skaggs said he only did what every other officer in the Clarksville Police Department would do and credited his training for helping him save a life.


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